Losing Wi-Fi signal or having no Wi-Fi signal: This is a gross example of an American Luxury that many take for granted and one that I am hostage to. When I find myself in areas where there is no signal or when visiting establishments where Wi-Fi is down or the service is not provided, I’m officially IRKED. I usually select my hotels during travel, based upon their Wi-Fi capabilities. This is because I use my phone and laptop so much in my line of business. The inconveniences of having accessibility to an established, strong and reliable Wi-Fi signal prohibits me from meeting deadlines with uploading time-sensitive material, and pose issues with social media posting in “real-time” when I am sometimes required to.
Misplacing or forgetting my cell phone: I am such a hostage to electronics that I have never been able to bring myself to participate in those “put your electronics” down for a day challenges. When I leave home without my cell phone, it’s the sarcastic equivalent to leaving without my brain. Yes, I can think without my cell phone, but I can’t stop thinking about my cell phone when I do not have it. Make sense? LOL. I guess I can call this one, a self-inflicted IRK. As I have been known to B-Line back to the house to get it or simply not leave home until I find it. Obviously, this does not apply to emergencies where leaving the phone would be necessary.
Assumptions: I understand that some assumptions can be argued as reasonable assumptions. While some are reasonable, some assumptions are mere assumptions, based on someone’s lack of information, no thought given to and no research conducted opinion. On a personal note, what IRKS me most about assumptions, are when people assume that every time I write about a love interest, via poetry or a blog post/article etc., as if I’m writing a love letter about my ex-husband. It would be a reasonable assumption if it was a recent divorce or if the relationship for me, had ever scratched the surface of love. However, it’s not and it didn’t and more importantly, I haven’t been married to my first husband in over 10 years ago. (This is where I pause to say that based on that last line, it would be reasonable for you to conclude that I have remarried since then.) Wouldn’t be right-but it would at least be reasonable.
For someone to assume that I’d be writing about him, behooves me. Especially since I have never written him a love letter, not in real life or in literary form nor have I written a piece which portrayed him as the love of my life or a love interest.
However, in the assumers’ defense, I have managed to keep that part of my life a mystery; making it impossible for them to know who or what is making me happy or sad these days. So, I’ll try not to be as IRKED about their assumption. -)
When people don’t read – I recently came upon a quote: “I would never read a book if it were possible for me to talk half an hour with the man who wrote it.” – Woodrow Wilson with that, I believe that this is the only time I would agree that you should table a book. That is because the exchange could produce greater impact, in the opportunity to speak directly to the source and it’s one that should always be embraced. However, when this is not the case and the book is all that you have available, you should read all the contents within, to gain insight and draw a more accurate conclusion if you want to know about the subject. I guess what IRKS me about people who don’t read, is not that they chose not to be readers but it’s how much they chime in on things that they haven’t read or have partially read. Never partially read anything.
Working with an impossible co-parent: This is one that if you have read anything about my life, you know is a constant battle which embeds the thorn in my side. No matter how upright I try to be and what I do on the side of right to remedy this ailing relationship I have with my son’s father- he always leads me back to being IRKED. Arguably, he knows that it IRKS me to not allow me access to my child, so he continues to do it in effort to keep me IRKED. It works sometimes. Some days I handle it much better than other days. Some days I let it roll off my back, I turn the other cheek and I ignore… However, there are those days that I ask myself, WTF and I just want to scream: “Why would a man do this to his child!” What is his problem and why won’t someone tell him to stop.
I share all the above things because I truly do have a desire to bring my readers into my home, so that they can better acquaint themselves with who I am as an individual, if they are truly interested in knowing me. While I cannot personally invite the world into a physical place to dine in champagne and celebratory occasions alongside my closest family members and life-long friends- I consider my readers a part of my extended family. Knowing a person, is knowing what makes them happy and sad, what causes them to snap, what makes them tick and what irks them. While there are personal matters which I feel a person should always keep under wraps, such as: family affairs and issues related to children, beyond freely sharing a glimpse into what life is like raising children; for the most past, none of the rest is a secret and it’s not off limits to my extended-family of readers. I would much rather them know, than to assume. Ask me anything….
Originally Posted on Mom Bloggers Club
It can be awfully frustrating to learn that people you love and adore, are using their time to “talk about you” instead of to encourage, inspire, motivate and support you in ways that would not cost them a dime. All the same, when you know that if they were to use that time supporting you in the ways that you need them to, that you would be more successful. And in turn, you can do something for the greater good of humanity, by blessing others with your talents, skills, and by being able to financially provide for yourself and your family.
Personally, I think that when you are not contributing to someone’s success, you don’t have the right to talk about them at all. At least not in a negative way. I don’t drive down the street and talk about homeless people, when I have not offered them any food, or when I have yet to ask them if there’s anything that I can do for them or if there’s anything that they need. And I certainly don’t do a drive by, just to determine and make sure that they are still homeless, to satisfy myself. I do not talk about them, because I have not offered them a room in my home. While that may be an extreme example, if you consider that approach, it may ward off any negative conversations that you begin to indulge in, in the future; with regards to other people. If you are going to talk about someone, make sure that you are contributing to their success, or toward sincerely seeing to it, that they are doing well. Here are some ways to be productive on your own
When you know that someone is asking you about the statuses of another person, and they have no good intentions, except but to spread the information they get, around town, you should make it your priority to answer them with something worth sharing, such as: XYZ is trying to start a business and I think they will be tremendously successful at it, with proper guidance and support from family and friends… would you like to contribute? That will shut down all that negative-speak.
I made a mention of this once, during a time where I was filtering friends, to determine who was in the thick of it with me- versus those who were just there for the show. After-which, I found out exactly who those people were. Someone asked me why don’t I just block them. Well, here’s why: Because they are still fans, and fans deserve a seat- just not one on the front row. In other words, they are still a part of the audience. They too, inspire you to write about certain things, which may assist another person on how to tackle similar issues with people who are not there for the win.
Which leads me to the next point, which is how it is sometimes a challenge to pin articles such as this, because your real supporters must read and filter through it. They may get a bad taste, that you are even responding to such behavior. However, I do believe that many people go through this, which is why it is important to address and mention. Perhaps it does challenge growth to a degree. It encourages you to use discernment in business relationships as well as how to find ways to handle such instances, and how to move beyond the wanna be threats in your life. Dear Haters, I still want you to win
While I may “unfriend” someone in life as well as on social media, I don’t block them. I just revoke full access to front row and back stage and terminate their VIP access.
Take their seat away and give it to someone else who will applaud your performance, and offer positive reinforcement. Give the seat to someone who’s interested in being in the front row. Allow the others, to sit in the nose bleed seats. They don’t get to sit down here where the drinks and food are free-flowing and they don’t get the swag bags that are full and plentiful, when they have chosen to neglect the fact that they had full access, when they chose to go sit in nose bleed seats and talk about what they think they can see from afar. Since they act like a nose bleed seat audience, give them a seat in that section, and be done with it.
For those who run out of things to talk about, and get to the point that they feel the need to discuss the affairs of others, take the time to assess how you can be a part of the solution, rather than the problem.
Example: If you know someone who blogs for a living, and their blog is monetized, meaning they are paid on views etc., then talk about that to everyone you know. You should be telling everyone that you know, that XYZ has a blog, and that they should check it out. Instead of sitting around, wondering how much money they are making and if they are making money at all. Invest in them, by sharing their business, with everyone that you know.
Example: Someone owns a dealership. Instead of talking to people about how they may not be selling any cars,** tell everyone that you know that if they are in the need for a car/motorcycle in the near or distant future, that they should consider XYZ’S business.**
Example: If someone you know is unemployed, and actively seeking full time work to support their family – instead of spreading the word about how they lost their job, share the qualities that they have and what they can/will bring to the table to any future employer.** Speak to everyone that you know who may be hiring, and speak positive things about how this unemployed person would be a great fit.**
Choose your words wisely, when you spread other people business. Word of mouth travels faster than a speeding bullet. Make your contribution count.
Simply put, I don’t always post to social sites, using real-time images or information. Because, I don’t want to and I don’t like to. This is because I have had the unfortunate pleasure, of being cyber-stalked and harassed beyond belief; in which it carried over into my life, causing an array of problems.
Consequently, I had to abruptly come to the realization, that there are people in the world, who are trolling your social media sites, just to find out where you are and what you are doing, at that very moment. What’s so terribly wrong with that? Especially when that is your line of work. Well, nothing. Except one very important thing. Their intent is not always pure. They are not always there as a sincere and genuine fan of your work, supporter of your work, or someone who wants to “follow” you. It’s to “collect information” a lot of times, and the motives behind doing so, are ill-willed.
Once I realized this, I used it to my advantage. Beginning a few years ago, I decided to give those roaches the run of their life, leading them on a roller coaster of “Where the eff is she really at today.” If I could have just seen their faces, when I’d broadcast 3-4 different events that I would be attending, all of which began at the same time; only for me to never appear at either, but rather, end up somewhere else, altogether. Then I shared it on social media the following day!
It worked in my favor, because I quickly realized that when I did not post anything about what I was about to do, my stalker had no time to strategically and maliciously make phone calls ahead of time, to those establishments, organizations, businesses or companies; for which I was working press or organizing an event. Whereas, prior to me becoming aware of what they had been doing, they were combing my social media daily, to find out where I would be, and what event I had planned. They would make phone calls and in a few cases, send emails to organizers, in an attempt to sabotage my work. They would feed them garbage, to slander my name and assasnate my character.
Fortunately for me, I had a few real ones, who notified me of what was happening. I was perplexed, as to why someone would stoop so low; both being highly educated professionals, with higher degrees of education and licenses for the work they did. One of which was an attorney, Houston based- who was extremely obsessed with everything I did from day to day. He made his life and career at that moment, about what I was doing, daily.
He and his accomplice went so far as to have me “fired” from Examiner.com and Modern Mom Blog, which I wrote for in 2013; by stating that I was a criminal. Did they do any research to find out the truth? Unfortunately, no they didn’t. However, many months later, the truth was revealed to me through an insider. A lot of companies, and in this case, a blog site, will take the word of someone they feel is a “credible source” such as an attorney. GO FIGURE. Arguably, the biggest liars known to man, is somehow seen as credible. But the truth is, when you throw around legal jargon with lay people, making threats to sue them or put them out of business, unless they fire one of their writers for talking about things that are happening, in their personal life ….it works. At least in those two cases it did. You don’t do a criminal background check to write for these blog sites, so how weird would it be for them to suddenly and randomly ask for one, without a reason, right? (which I would have gladly given if asked and informed) So, the easiest thing to do, is for them to just wash their hand and back out of an affiliation with you, when something like this occurs. Especially in the case of Modern Mom, where you have a well-known celebrity, as the owner.
When I began to write for other platforms, I took the smart approach. I decided to get in front of the problem. I went directly to the editors from that point. I informed them as to what was going on, and prepared them for what to expect. I also began to speak-out about it in my blogs. I disclosed to editors and owners, how I was being stalked, harassed, and sabotaged. I detailed exactly what was happening and why, once I realized who was at the core of it. I related that these two obsessed beings, were so enthralled in destroying me, that they were making calls, sending falsified letters, erroneous documents via mail and email to companies etc., using scare tactics to get me fired and to discredit my work.
Two platforms agreed to allow me to show them, with creating false campaigns, just to sit back and wait for the villains to make their move. It worked like a charm. One after the next, we were knocking them down and laughing in the writer’s room. Their efforts were relentless. However, after one last attempt at another site I was writing for (a site I shall not name) they ceased fire. Obviously, the editor did speak about it in a not so tell-all, kind of way, taking a diplomatic approach, I was able to figure out what the conversation was all about. I am happy to still be a writer on their platform today.
Here’s what I want you to take from this: This may be a story about how two extremely boring individuals, equally yoked in bitterness, malice and sadness, who had nothing else better to do, tried to destroy me and perhaps still are. But it can happen to anyone. Perhaps not to this extreme, but I will say that I didn’t think it would be this extreme either in the beginning. So, you just don’t know. I had to think about the fact that I have a small child, and at any moment, he could be with me on any one of my escapades, having an enjoyable time and we could have been ambushed. When people go the lengths that these two individuals went, you can’t trust their next move. It’s also a testament to the fact that, not only street thugs, gangsters and low-life people pull this kind of stuff. In fact, they don’t usually have the means or resources. It takes skill to do what these two individuals did. It took someone knowledgeable enough about the law, the script to use when scaring off these companies and causing them to raise a brow at me.
Fortunately, I found a way to make it work for me early-on. But unfortunately, it took a couple of lost assignments and platforms before it happened. In hindsight, I harbor no feeling of hostility toward those companies, as I know they were in between a rock and a hard place at the time, in trying to maintain confidentiality with their “credible source” and myself. In the case of blogging, we were not bound to any agreement. And that’s just the way the cookie crumbles sometimes.
Everyone doesn’t have good intentions, and I consider myself to be very astute to that fact now. Especially, since I have learned of so many others, of which this has also happened to. I’m consciously aware that all people are not good people, so in my line of work and in my day to day, I have found a means to deal with it. I continue to mix it up every now and then, just so that I can keep them guessing, while I keep on moving!
#IamNotReallyHereAtThisMoment #IWasHereInAugust #ThisIsAnOldPic #ImPostingThisSoThatNoOneWillBeAbleToStalkMe #INeverWentToBeverlyHillsHotel #IDidNotEatPizzaLastNight #WheresNiedria #IBetYouAreWonderingWhereIam #IRefuseToLiveInFear
Article was originally published on CafeMom, at Here’s why I don’t always post in real time, and a must read, as to why you should think about it
I do solemnly swear to bring you content from the most interesting and not so interesting parts of my world, that everyone and no one at the same time, would possibly want to hear all about, to include: Past, Present and Future hopefuls, as well as those that didn’t make it on a brain numbing reality show and stories which wouldn’t possibly make it to a theater near you, anytime soon; due to extreme language and content that has placed it on a (what to do with this) list, until a rating can be created for approval of its release.
I will also do my best to see to it that the sentence that precedes this one, is the last run on sentence that you will ever read again. If I fail, charge it to my head and not my heart. No, actually charge it to the University that I graduated from. It wouldn’t be the first time they billed me for an education that has yet to equal the pay I made in Corporate America.
It is my humble desire and number one goal to make you happy, smile, laugh, cry, relate, and never be offended. Should you find something offensive, read it again, until you realize that I am not smart enough to offend anyone and that there’s a strong possibility that you over analyzed it and read it all wrong. If you are still offended, then please accept my deepest condolence in advance, for your dead heart. I mean, my deepest and most sincere apologies, for it is never my intent to make you think outside the box. Should I find myself in a position where I cannot share anything exciting, I will make it a point to mess up along the way, just so that I can show you that I am perfectly imperfect and extremely apologetic for being so. I’ve found that to be an excellent crutch and makes a great fall back plan in life. In fact, I am writing a course right now, titled: 101 ways to completely overrate your failures, so that sympathy will get you a good grade.
This is my first time on the Mommy-Merry-Go-Round, so I will depend on all of you to pick me up after the swift turns have thrown me from the ride, discombobulated and confused me. But only after you’ve had a good laugh about me being oblivious about “what just happened”. The contingency here is, so long as you assist me back to life, you have the right to laugh out loud.
Every day is a tryout. In my world, the ten-step program is learning to count down to one, after my child has asked me, why? more than 10 times in 20 minutes. I have this thing called MB, Mommy Brain – was diagnosed with it on December 24th, 2010 and I have had it for 6.5 years. Well, 6 years 5 months and 12 days and I was told that its malignant, invasive and uncontrollable, but that I will live – and I will live with it for the rest of my life. When I use big words out of context, it’s because I have been entertaining a kid who seems to be smarter than me, and it’s just my desperate attempt at assuring and affirming to myself, that I am still intelligent.
It is my intent to balance the universe, by showing you who the real wonder women are in the world and what our costumes look like, even if it does include an apron with words “All I Need Is Wine, stitched across the front.
You are going to see days where I walk in a pretty high stiletto, because I can’t find the other one, and other days, I will be seen in sandals or flip flops. There will be days where I simply don’t feel like wearing any shoes at all. I have flaws, but all of them are flawless. My little dirty secret is that I own a large Beauty Queen Crown.(A real one) I purchased it for myself when I turned 39 last year, to remind me that I am Queen. At least in my castle. I can’t say that too loud because I don’t want the beehive after me.
I will do my best to lead you blindly, under my classic old maid frames, which are in dire need of replacing. I hope to connect with like-minded people who also mess up this thing called life, on a daily- just so that I can be reminded of how extraordinarily normal, I am.
Should you agree that I live a very boring life, I invite you to call me so that you can tell me all about yours. If you follow, I follow back. If you lead, I will follow. If you follow, I will turn around and ask you, where are we going?
Disclaimer: I realize that there are commas in the above manifesto, in places it shouldn’t me. I realize that it was random and all over the place. I realize that some people never made it to this disclaimer.
Note Pad / Journal and Pen: As a writer, I can attest to the fact that sometimes thoughts will hit you while standing in the crowded line at the neighborhood grocery store, while purchasing Broccoli for the evening, to cook along with fried corn and steak. Your inspiration can come from anything as small as seeing a toddler crying in the store, a customer dispute with the store manager, to the smell and aroma that’s chasing you down from the deli, all the way to the car that almost hit you, as you were leaving the store. People always ask me, where does my inspiration and ideas come from.
It’s really this simple: I am already inspired to write, I remain in a constant state of being inspired to write, because I love the art of expression. The only way that I know how to do that, is through writing. My ideas come from anywhere and from anything. Every day, there’s a story to be written. I keep my note pad ready for those moments. I jot down ideas as they come and even if they don’t make the final cut, I don’t throw them away. I save them, and often find myself back on that page, building from that thought when and if have a momentary block. I have been known to pull off the road, just to write an idea down or to complete notes and bullet points I want to cover once I begin to write about it.
Camera: They say pictures are worth a thousand words. I think they meant to say, photos can be worth a million bucks. Because sometimes that “money shot” is real! Aside from being in the right place at the right time and having the once or twice in a lifetime opportunity to be the author behind that money shot, having a camera allows you to capture moments that you will never be able to reproduce. That may be your child swinging on the swing, taking a leap into mid-air and landing on his feet. It could be your child taking on the monkey bars, backwards or making rocks jump across the lake. It could be spare of the moment, candid photos that will last a lifetime, in which you can share with readers, who are then able to see the event that you attended, as something worth attending for themselves next year.
It may be at an outing, where you’re having the time of your life and you want to share it the next day, but words could never describe the fabulous time that you had, whereas a photo, nails it. Candid photos also make great talking points and writing prompts. You can present a photo and ask readers to give you their rendition or version of events of what transpired that evening. In this, comes inspiration, because everyone’s answer may be different, and it may spark an entirely different article or blog post for you. Plus, it increases engagement.
A Snack: Because we all like a little protein snack while we are on the go. Truth is, while we are fed very well at events, sometimes we find ourselves talking the entire time and forget to eat. Between events, especially when you get to the point that you schedule yourself for 2-3 different appearances or editorial assignment, which are happening back to back, you don’t have time to stop for food. The lines are too long at the drive thru’, the traffic is too thick to get off the freeway and chance being late or even a no show, so you need to have something in your purse that will carry you from point A to point B.
Plus, it’s an excellent idea anyway to have an extra pick me up to rejuvenate yourself, refresh and hit the reset button before arriving at the next event. As a writer, you may end up at the park a little longer than planned because you found something inspiring to write about, after meeting a mommy of 6, who’s recently widowed or divorced, who just made a move to the city. And because you don’t want to interrupt that stream of thought, behind your belly rumbling, you will tank yourself that you had something right there to snack on. People always ask about writer’s block, and while I have only experienced it once or twice in the last 10 years, I can say that the reason I don’t deal with it now is because I never stop writing. My thoughts lead me. If something says write, right now, I don’t put it off.
Calendar/ Planner: Keeping a calendar and planner keeps you on point. It prevents you from double booking yourself at an event, or for any programs, tours, conferences or workshops that you have a desire to attend and take part in. If you have reached out to tourism bureaus and PR companies about events, it’s an innovative idea to write it down immediately, upon approval to attend, so that; Number 1. You don’t forget, and number 2. You don’t end up somewhere else, when you should have been at the event you obligated yourself to. A calendar and planner keeps you organized and if writing/ blogging is what you want to do, organization is a must when it comes to attending events or taking on press trips and Editorial assignments.
Plus, it puts things into perspective to where you’re able to see deadlines, to make good on your promise to companies to provide them with reviews and or ratings of their product and or services. It helps you plan accordingly, not to take on too much. You do not want to tarnish your rep, by forgetting or not delivering in a timely or promise, because the competition is thick. There are other writers out there waiting in the wing for an opportunity like that. Don’t mess it up, by not having logged it from the jump. Forgetting does not send the message that you take their brand serious or that you’re responsible enough to handle an assignment.
Cell Phone /Recorder: This is because sometimes it is not as convenient to pull off the road and jot things down. You may also be in a position where it’s better to record your own thoughts and ideas, versus writing them down for later review and consideration of a topic to write about. You can use a recorder as a sounding board Listening to yourself helps to break even with what deserves a title and what goes on the back-burner for a later date.
As a writer, there’s also many opportunities that may arise where you have either planned to interview someone or the impromptu opportunity arises, and you always want to be prepared! Cell phones also offer the option of easy posting. If you have something that is worth sharing in the moment, whether it’s in conclusive with an all-out article / post or the picture that’s worth a thousand words to let your audience to #StayTuned, A cell phone with wi-fi capabilities will help you achieve this.
Tablet/Laptop: There comes a time when you spend countless hours at your local coffee shop or lounge, conveniently located at the entrance of your subdivision; where all the notes that you’ve kept on your recorder or the notes that you’ve jotted down all week, in your journal will need to be transferred or transcribed into a post.
Everything you have done all week to accumulate thoughts and ideas, will not be front and center, ready for a place on your writing list. Is it a book, a chapter a book, an outline, a post, a blog, an article, a thought that will inspire an outline for a story? Whatever it is, you now are face to face with your tablet or laptop and it’s time to get to writing. What are you waiting for?