3 Lessons I’ve Learned From Mentor-In-My-Head Paul Brunson

13 days and counting until 2015, are you getting ready? 

Where do I even begin with this week’s “Mentor In My Head?” Paul C. Brunson, known as the modern-day “Hitch“, has connected over thousands of individuals on dates through live events and social media. Three years ago, he launched his matchmaking and lifestyle coaching agency that has grown from just him to a league of coaches, specialists and consultants nationwide.  And according to Oprah Winfrey, (yes, THE Oprah Winfrey) “he’s much more than a matchmaker, he’s a life coach.” He’s a businessman, author, television host, devoted husband and father who I’ve admired for a long time, as he encourages and empowers people to live their best lives by fully embracing their purpose.

Meet Paul C. Brunson.

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Paul is without a doubt in the love business, but his passion for living his best life has truly opened doors for a number of awesome opportunities. From hosting weekly #MentorMonday chats that focus on entrepreneurship, relationships and life, to his Modern Day Matchmaker Wednesday Twitter chats that looks to match three eligible bachelors in real-time, to hosting Black Enterprise’s weekly web series Our WorldPaul continues to expand his reach to not only share his story, but to positively enrich the lives of others. Oh, and did I mention that his life will soon be documented in a movie? Yeah, he’s kind of a big deal.

Here are three lessons that Paul has taught me:

1. Say what you mean, and do as you say. Paul once said, “you aren’t grown until your actions match your words.” Just absorb that word of truth for a second. There is so much power in words (y’all know that) and it truly speaks to your character when you can walk the walk, but not talk the talk. Whether he’s sharing a pearl of wisdom on Twitter, IG or during a segment of his various web series, Paul’s personable and relatable personality is consistent, which is so admirable. I think that it also speaks to his work ethic, and when you’re managing so many awesome projects that he does, you’ve got to stay on point. *Salute*

2. You don’t have to put your dreams on hold As a husband and father, Paul is a great example of how it is possible to do what you love and raise a family. If you follow him on Instagram, it is no secret that his beautiful wife and adorable little boys are the light of his life. Many millennials (myself included) that aren’t married with kids yet often wonder what life would be like have so much more responsibility, but the truth is we can’t think of it as a daunting challenge to take on. But we have to believe that we are in fact worthy of receiving the love that we deserve. From what Paul has shared, there is so much beauty and love that comes with sharing the journey of achieving your dreams with people who love you unconditionally. And I can’t wait to experience that one day.

3. Don’t hold back — and go hard in the paint NOW! This lesson is strongly related to the first, but what’s the purpose of starting something without doing it forcefully, unapologetically and with a sense of urgency? Paul recently said that we can be passive in love — not if we are expecting results. But I think that pearl of wisdom can also relate to the goals we wish to achieve professionally and personally as well. So that awesome business you want to start, or that blog you’ve been meaning to launch? It’s time to do get to it!

Paul, thank you so much for inspiring myself and so many others to pursue the lives that we are destined to live! Your drive, hustle and excitement for living life passionately and purposefully are such an encouragement, and I appreciate the amazing work that you do.

You can follow Paul on Facebook,  Twitter and Instagram, and of course learn more about his coaching and matchmaking agency by visiting his website

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Wisdom Wednesday: Don’t Be Hard On Yourself

Happy Wednesday, friends! Can you believe that there are 14 days left in 2014? Are you ready for 2015? Excited? Spinning with your hands up? I know I am.

Anyway, I want to make a confession to you all today: I am my own worst critic. *gasp* Yep, that’s what I said. ;-) I don’t know about you, but I can count many times in which I’ve put unnecessary pressure on myself — so much so that I’ve grown stressed, anxious and down right mean.

When I look back on those experiences, I realize that I should’ve adhered more to living in the moment rather than worrying about the outcome. Furthermore, I should have taken a moment of “me time,” evaluate my feelings toward the situation and the proceed to act accordingly. Continue reading

3 Lessons I’ve Learned From Mentor-In-My-Head Myleik Teele

Happy Thursday, Friends!

If you’re a natural hair diva like myself, then you are very familiar with curlBOX and its amazing founder Myleik Teele. She started curlBOX because she noticed that there was no “sexy” representation of natural hair care products on the market. Her monthly subscription service provides naturalistas quality samples and full-sized products for women with various types of natural hair.

Meet Myleik Teele.

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Since her company’s inception, I’ve been inspired by her drive, tenacity, confidence and amazing work ethic. Following her on Instagram and Twitter and listening to her podcast not only allows you to witness those things, but to gain insight into the mind of a young entrepreneur that is constantly growing and evolving. She’s always sharing her latest reads, quotes that inspire her and the importance of showing appreciation to those that have helped you bring your dream to life.

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Millennial on a Mission: Bruce L. Burks

Today’s “Millennial on a Mission” (and the last one of 2014!)is an educator that has brought his passion for mentoring and personal style into the classroom. Daily, he instills in his students (particularly young black males) the importance dressing for success, and taking full advantage of their education.

I’d like for you to  meet Bruce Burks.

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Hailing from Louisville, Alabama, Bruce attended the Alabama A&M University in Normal, Alabama where he studied elementary education with a dual certification in early childhood. Initially, Bruce wanted to pursue the medical field and become a pediatrician. But after graduating from high school at the top of his class, he wasn’t as prepared in math and science as he thought he would be upon entering college. “I had to make a choice: get tutored and push through, or change my major and not allow another young man who looked like me have his dream deferred,” Bruce recalls. “With that being said, I majored in Elementary Education and vowed to combat the statistics and build the fundamentals of Math and Science for children.”

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[Op-Ed] Dear White People: Black Millennials Give Too

Written by Ebonie Johnson Cooper (Friends of Ebonie), Chasity Cooper (Millennial On A Mission) and Jalisa Whitley (The Nonprofit Help LLC) 

The 2014 satirical film, Dear White People, follows four black students at a fictitious Ivy League university illustrating overt and covert racial biases that exist at the university. Based on true events, the film helps to shed light on the diversity challenges faced by black students at traditionally all-white institutions. How does this relate to philanthropy? Philanthropy, conventionally speaking anyway, is associated with the “old, white and wealthy.” The inclusion of communities of color into the philanthropic narrative, while not new, is not yet fully realized. Further, the introduction of a new, younger generation within the African – American community seems almost impossible. Like the students highlighted in the film Dear White People, African – American or black millennials are fighting to have their voices heard within a space many would consider out of their league.

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Millennial on a Mission: Quay Wilson

Happy December!

I’ve had the pleasure of knowing this week’s “Millennial on a Mission” for a few of years, and I’ve always admired her kindred spirit, huge heart and willingness to be so helpful to those around her. She recently was spotlighted in The Gazette for her volunteer work in Ghana, and will be returning to the country at the end of this month for a second time. The moments that she captured simply don’t even begin to express her gratitude for this once-in-a-lifetime experience, and  with #GivingTuesday tomorrow, I thought it would be fitting to share her story.

I’d like for you to meet Quay Wilson.

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Born and raised in Richmond, Virginia, Quay moved to Silver Spring, Maryland at the age of 12 and attributes the DMV for her upbringing. Before traveling to Ghana back in January, she was working towards her associates degree at Montgomery College, where she majored in Mass Communications with a concentration of Radio Journalism. “After returning from what was a life changing experience, I felt the urge to gravitate towards more community outreach work and decided to change my major to public policy,” Quay says. “It was without a doubt  the second best decision I’ve made in my twenties. The first was deciding to go to Ghana, Africa.”

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You Can’t Take It With You: The Transition To Change

(This is a guest post that was originally published on AjaMonae.com)

As the clock struck midnight on my birthday back in January, I had an inkling that something would be entirely different about this new year of life. I knew that it would come with a new set of responsibilities, a new fervor for life and a TON of changes. And while change can be quite scary, it is absolutely necessary in order to become the people that we are destined to be.

About a week ago, one of my friends put on Instagram one of my new favorite bible verses that goes something like this:
 
“No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening — it’s painful! But afterward there will be a peaceful harvest of right liveing for those who are trained in this way.” — Hebrews 12:11
It came with reading that verse that I finally understood why we experience certain bouts of struggle in our lives. Some of those ‘teachable moments’ may be as short as a day or a week, and others may last for months and maybe even years. But once we make that conscious decision to pursue the things that we know are best for us, we will begin to experience a peace, tranquility and hyper-focus that is simply in describable. Let me take it back a little bit to provide a little context, and that last sentence will make a LOT more sense. ;-)

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