Stop Doing SH** For Free!

Make that money girl, don't let it make you. - The Players Club

My face every time an email pops up in my inbox talking about great exposure and future affiliate programs #iamunable #icant

My face every time an email pops up in my inbox talking about great exposure and future affiliate programs #iamunable #icant

Me walking away from BS "opportunities" that aren't really opportunities.

Me walking away from BS "opportunities" that aren't really opportunities.

Storytime: Recently, a company that I had reviewed product for in the past approached me with an opportunity. Because I believe in the brand and really liked the product I said yes with no hesitation and all was well and good until I was asked how much I would like to be compensated for my work. When I tell you that I clenched, I could not actually give you a better example of the physical manifestation of my level of discomfort. I had no idea what I was worth, what to ask for, or even if I should be paid at all. I basically said, "Who me? No, I don't need to be compensated" to which the owner replied, and I'm paraphrasing here, "Yes. You do. You get paid for work". If you're a fellow creative or creator then you probably understand the shock waves that went through my body. If you're a fellow creator then you understand that people expect handouts. If you're a fellow creator you're probably used to giving handouts for the sake of "getting some great exposure". If you're a fellow creator I want you to listen real good to the advice I'm about to give you: Stop. Doing. SHIT. For. Free. #thatsall Honestly, it's that simple.

Stop doing shit for free. This is my motto for 2017 and I'm applying it to much everything. Here's why you should too!

Your Work Has Worth

When you decide to pursue your passion as a career or a side hustle, that's when you've decided to put in work. You start investing in your craft in a serious way: time and money become heavily involved. When people start to notice and reach out to you, that means they see worth in your work, they see opportunity in your audience, they see you solving a problem that they have. If anyone wants access to these things, they need to pay for it. 

When You Undervalue Yourself, You Allow Others To Do The Same

In my interaction with the aforementioned business owner, I gave someone else the power to determine my worth. If I was working with someone looking to make a quick buck and take advantage, I could have left that deal pretty raw. Fortunately for me, this person gave me advice when they didn't have to. I've now sat down and thought about my practices AND pricing so that I never again give anyone the opportunity to buy me for cheap.  

When You Undervalue Yourself, You Set Market Price for Others In Your Industry

If I was messy, petty, and had the energy I could publish the countless emails I get from companies wanting me to promote their products or services without even offering me the chance to test them. I often play along because I'm the worst and enjoying wasting rude people's time and eventually let them know that I cannot recommend something to my audience when I cannot vouch for its quality. At first, I wondered why anyone would have the balls to even approach me with such absurdity, but then, I realized, it's because someone else agreed to it. To that person, STOP. FULL STOP. IMMEDIATELY. Seriously, you make it more difficult for everyone else.

You Deserve Nice Things

I'm not saying that money is the key to happiness, but I will say that you cannot buy food without it and food makes me pretty damn happy. If you're putting in hours of work creating content to promote someone's brand (and I PUH-ROMISE you they're making money as a result of your efforts) then you deserve to be paid in some way, shape, or form so that you can have the things that you like and need. 

So to sum all this up, If you are working for someone, you deserve to be paid what you're worth. Point blank. Period. the End.

Why You Should Skip the Clothing Resale Stores and What to Do With Your Clothes Instead

Well that was a mouthful...

Spring is really trying to come through despite the blizzard that I'm looking at through my window which means most of us are trying to clean out our living spaces to make room for all the new things we plan to buy this season and in the summer. If you're anything like me that means that you take an in depth look at your closet and decide that most of it just has to go. At this point you may be tempted to pack a bag of your latest and greatest that you just don't wear anymore (or never got the chance to wear for whatever reason) and take a trip down to the nearest clothing resale shop. let me help you with that: don't. I promise you that it's not worth it and unless you take your designer wares to a high end consignment shop you will barely recoup any of the money you spent.

Now you may be asking why I harbor such a strong dislike for clothing resale shops and I am here to tell you. As I said, you BARELY receive any return on investment (not that designer clothes are actually a smart investment). A designer bag originally purchased for $200+ MIGHT get you around $50 and the store will turn around and sell it for $100-$150. At that point you may as well sell the bag yourself. These stores generally have a list of things or styles that they can buy for any given season and despite having the coolest, most on trend clothing you may not have what they're looking for. And let's be honest, not everyone on staff will be fashion savvy enough to understand your unique taste. 

So now you have a pile of clothes that you need to get rid of but some crazy lady on the internet machine told you not to go to a real store. Well what are you supposed to do now? I'll tell you:

Host a Clothing Swap or Give to a fashionable Friend

There are certain items I don't mind giving away but then when I look at my closet there are certain things that NEED to go someone who will love them the way that I did. Instead of selling these items or giving them away to charity, I give them to the person I have in mind. Another option is to host a clothing swap with people who have the same level of style as you.

Give Items to a Charity Like A Women's Shelter

I'm not a fan of for profit charities such as The Salvation Army or Goodwill because their prices can be a bit ridiculous. that being said, most major cities have men's or women's shelters  that are in need of clothing among other things. 

Sell Your Clothing On Your Own

This is the most obvious option but it does require a little more involvement than just dropping your clothes somewhere and leaving them forever. Sites like eBay make it easy for regular people to sell their clothes and you'll probably get closer to your purchasing price than you would at a resale shop.

How do you get rid of your old clothes?

It Doesn't Have to Match, It Just Has to Go

Nothing matched today, and that's okay...

Someone recently complimented my outfit and said something along the lines of "I would never put that together because it doesn't match". So many people think that in order for an ensemble to look nice, everything has to be the same: Same shade, same pattern, same color. Not So! My motto is as long as it "goes" it's good. You'll know when something clashes. Just trust your instincts and start experimenting!