5 Things I Have Learned From Women Who Lunch Brunch  

A couple of weeks ago, I attended my second Women Who Lunch Brunch, which took place at  Benchmark Restaurant near downtown Brooklyn. Women Who Lunch Brunch is a vibrant online community joined by a group of multifaceted professional women who refused to be boxed in.

Curated by Roodelyne Jean Baptiste, Digital Marketer & Owner of RSocks, this event discussed topics ranging from entrepreneurship, finances to relationship, and also self-love. Honestly there is nothing more that I enjoy in life besides pancakes and mimosa then being surrounded by open-minded individuals with not just dreams but set plans to achieve them. Unlike many brunches that I’ve attended over the past couple of years, this one is by far one of my favorite for a few reasons: everyone is welcoming, they give out hugs, and the attendees are very transparent about their experiences.

Guest speaker Lisa Francoeur Mesa of LinkedIn & owner of Fancyfied dropped some powerful gems during the course of our brunch that definitely helped us shaped our mindset for the upcoming year. The passion in her voice when discussing her lifestyle brand Fancyfied was truly inspiring. The crowd came from diverse background; doctors, professional photographers, designers, and real estate agents who despite their busy schedules are looking to grow and achieve more in their life

Check out these gems Lisa dropped during the bi- annual Women Who Lunch Brunch

Lisa Francoeur Mesa & Roodelyne Jean Baptiste

“People within your network can help or diminish your dreams.”

I can’t stress this enough, you are the sum of the people with whom you spend the most time. As  Kanye said, “Too many Urkels on your team, that’s why your wins low.” If you have movers and shakers well trust me, you too will find way to be one as well. However, as Lisa mentioned if your environment is toxic, no matter how long you’ve been friends with them DROP THEM.

“Carve out time to devote to your dream.”

Despite your job, make time for the side thing until it can become your full-time thing. Rome wasn’t build in one day nor will your dreams. We create excuses faster than we create our goals, but if it’s something that you want to achieve make time.

 Procrastination: You eat what you kill.

Is procrastination inevitable? No, however, don’t let it cripple you nor your dreams. Lisa’s solution to procrastination is quite simple: “Think about all the things you’ve achieved in your life and use that feeling to keep you going.” 

“How you show up anywhere is how you show up everywhere.”

For most of us, we tend to hide our personality when we are at work. However, Lisa mentioned that by being authentic to your values, others will be able to see you shine through. As my mom would say, “The right people will be attracted to you and your essence, so go out there and  be you!

Write down your goals.

What have you done to realize your goal today? Let the reminders and goals you set for yourself haunt you. I know it can sound daunting but don’t let circumstances nor time take away from achieving your purpose in life.

Let me know how you’re planning to wrap up this year’s goals and be on the lookout for the next Women Who Lunch Brunch.

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On the Rise: Tola Lawal

2015headshot2-1When I think of the word Go Getter, there are a few individuals that comes to mind and Tola Lawal is one of them. Having been the driving force behind some of the best marketing brand , Tola’s work ethic and knack for marketing speaks for itself. These days, you can find Tola doing another type of branding – one that involves providing the youth with the tools needed to pursue a higher education. Read more about Tola below!

1.Where were you 6 months after college?

I always knew I wanted to be in PR/ Marketing but I didn’t know how to get there. After graduation, I applied to various roles in marketing however, after many failed attempts I came across a temp agency that helped me get to my destination and the rest was history. I highly recommend college graduates to reach out to a temp agency and build a relationship with a recruiter in the beginning of their job search.

2.Tell me about your career journey to counseling.

Throughout out my career, I have always been the point of contact for advice, especially when it came to college counseling. When I was laid off in 2014 from BET, I took that opportunity to fuel my curiosity. I first started with doing a tour discussing the transition from high school to college which was sponsored by Black Enterprise. I then launched my non- profit organization Gyrl Wonder. Now, as Assistant of Director of College Success I have never found myself more comfortable and passionate about my job and I enjoy every second of it.

tola_in_class3. What sparked Tola Speaks?

I am a Marketer by nature, I realized that if I wanted to do speaking engagements focused on the youth, I needed to create a successful brand around it.

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On The Rise: Ayana Iman

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Around this time last year I stumbled across an article titled Letting Go: I Quit My Job” as I was on my way home from work. Not wanting to miss the context, I held my phone tightly and searched for a nearby bench to digest every word the author Ayana Iman penciled down.  She was very clear on why following her own happiness was more important than clocking in. Since then, I have been a supporter of this amazing soul who  whose risk taking abilities has open new door of opportunities. Let’s find out more about Ayana Iman below.

Tell me a little bit about yourself. 

My name is Ayana Iman, I’m a 25-year-old professional speaker and aspiring life coach. I am the mother of one, a beautiful three-year-old girl named Ayo, the joy of my life. I hold a Bachelors Degree in Journalism and a Masters Degree in Strategic Communications. My professional goals include creating a conference in 2018 for the expansion of #AuthenticConvos, and helping 100,000 people cultivate an attitude of gratitude

Where were you 6 months after college?

6-months after undergrad, I was fired from my first post-graduate job and on the verge of becoming homeless. Soon after, I found out I was pregnant. Let’s just say the top of the year; including graduation, a great internship and travel were a stark difference than how it ended.

You launched an e-book on gratitude last year, how important is it to be grateful?

It’s very important to be grateful, especially because it is the starting point of all abundance. Gratitude remains when happiness fades, it keeps us present and allows us to experience some joy. It is the same reason my current situation looks completely different than 4 years ago. Instead of focusing on lack, I looked at the areas I was abundant, from the love of my family to my health; it all played a role in my progression.

54c1bb94-bc3a-42ff-81e6-9e09491ee16bYou are a serial entrepreneur, how do you stay on top of things while managing your personal life?

I am still in the beginning stages of my career building a foundation and learning how to become a successful entrepreneur. However, being busy comes with the territory, and I prioritize my time with my family, especially my daughter and boyfriend. They are very involved with my projects so it makes it easier to manage my personal life.

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