Top 4 Takeaways from Jen Sincero’s “You Are a Badass”

First things first, YOU ARE A BADASS. But unfortunately, even badasses struggle with doubt and lack of confidence.

In fact, if you are anything like me, you’ve probably found yourself questioning the attainability of your goals, or your potential to accomplish them.

From witty commentary to the harsh truth, Jen Sincero’s “You Are a Badass,” is filled with tips to help you turn your life around.

Here are some of my favorite takeaways:

1. Being positive is important

To achieve your goals, it’s essential to have the right mindset. No one achieves success by doubting their capabilities. Instead, be positive. Realize that what you put out into the world, is the same thing that you will get in return.

“If you want to live a life you’ve never lived, you have to do things you’ve never done.” – Jen Sincero

When dealing with failure, dust yourself off and get back up.

Because guess what?

If you’re not looking out for yourself, no one else is going to. So stop questioning your every move. Ask for what you want, and keep moving forward.

2. It’s okay to prove yourself wrong

People are often more concerned about being right than they are about turning their life around.

For example, someone who says “I am always broke,” will do everything they can for that statement to hold true.

Unconsciously, this person wants to be right, more than they want to resolve their money problems. So what happens the minute they come into some extra cash? They spend it!

Don’t be this person. Instead, prove yourself wrong!

Start with small steps, then work your way from there. For example, in this case, you could start by setting aside a little bit of money each time you get paid.

“You need to go from wanting to change your life to deciding to change your life.” – Jen Sincero

It’s also equally as important to shift your mindset.

Saying things like “I am always broke,” can cause the pattern to repeat itself. So instead, say things like “I am getting better at handling money.”

Something as simple as rephrasing our words can help tremendously in the accomplishment of our goals.

(Note: Sheryl Sandberg also discusses this issue in her book Lean In for Graduates.”)

3. Having money is okay

People have a lot of problems when it comes to money.

Those who have it usually avoid the subject (or they downplay how much they make) because they don’t want people to think they’re showing off. On the other hand, those that don’t have it automatically assume that those that do are superficial or selfish.

But having money, or admitting that you want to make more money does not make you shallow or a bad person.

“Most people are living in an illusion based on someone else’s beliefs.” – Jen Sincero

Money is only an object and whether we like it or not it’s something that we all need in order to live.

So don’t ever feel guilty for making money or for charging people for your work. Value what you do, and let your salary reflect it. There’s no shame in being compensated for your hard work.

4. Start Living for Yourself

My biggest takeaway from this book was to stop making decisions based on other people. Don’t let anyone influence what you do and when making big decisions ask yourself why you are leaning one way versus another.

Make sure that whatever you decide, was REALLY your decision.

More importantly, never let anyone call you selfish for chasing your dreams. And never allow the fear of selfishness, influence what you do.

5 Often Missed New Year’s Resolutions

The New Year is just around the corner which means that it is the perfect time to start thinking about your goals and resolutions for 2018.

Unfortunately, despite people’s efforts to establish resolutions, not many of them are accomplished by the end of the year.

Studies show that 80% of New Year’s resolutions fail by mid-February.

More often than not I hear people say they want to start working out, make healthier choices, drink less, read more, etc. And while all this is important, I find that some crucial things continuously get left out of people’s resolutions, things that if tackled could lead to the accomplishment of many of your goals.

So, if you are one of the many people (myself included), who have ever abandoned a New Year’s resolution, here are 5 key things you should consider this upcoming year.

#1 Stop Procrastinating

Studies show that one of the biggest barriers that keeps people from accomplishing their goals is their desire to have fun instead of doing something that requires tons of work.

This should come as no surprise.

I mean let’s face it, having goals is great but some days all you want to do is turn on Netflix and binge watch the latest season of Stranger Things, or your all-time favorite episodes of Friends.

Doing something enjoyable and mindless is undoubtedly more appealing than dragging yourself to the gym at 6 am on a cold Monday morning, or reading a book when all you hear is people talking about the newest Netflix original.

We’ve all been there.

It’s okay to take a few days off to unwind, but the real problem is when procrastination begins to take over.

Procrastination = Sabotage

Procrastination is a hard habit to break, but that doesn’t make it impossible. When things get tough, and you begin to deviate from things that genuinely matter, take a moment to remind yourself what’s at stake.

Think about what you are trying to accomplish, and realize that the only person affected by your lack of action is yourself.

Here are a few more tips to help you combat procrastination:

Minimize distractions:

As mentioned, giving yourself time to unwind and do something enjoyable is perfectly fine, but try to save that for the end of the day.

Recognize that the show everyone is talking about is probably as good as they say it is, so instead of fooling yourself into thinking you can watch 1 Episode, focus on things that matter first.

Commit to the task:

Focus on accomplishing your goals or to-dos rather than putting them off for tomorrow.

Because guess what? Tomorrow will be just as a struggle. It’s easier to put things off for later, but the rewards only come to those who put in the work.

Remind yourself why it’s important:

People always say “I have to workout” or “I need to read more,” but the truth is that you don’t “have to” or “need to” do anything.

You can, if you wish, sit back and do nothing at all. Throw all your cares out the window, and simply not give a crap. But you WANT to do these things. You WANT to be healthier, do better at work, and live a better life.

Remind yourself that you are doing these things for YOU.

Phrases like “need to” and “have to” can quickly lead to self-sabotage, but recognizing that you choose how to spend your time implies that you are in control of the results.

#2 Increase Your Confidence

Confidence is a tricky subject. In fact, a lot of people are often concerned about appearing overly confident because they are afraid of coming off as cocky, but trust me there’s a big difference.

When you are confident, it reflects in your attitude, your walk, your smile, etc.

Confidence is easy to recognize, and people who have it are more likely to be heard and taken seriously than people who are insecure.

Unfortunately, no matter how great you are, how awesome you’d be at that new job, or how much money your idea could save the company, no one will believe you if you don’t sell it.

Part of selling it means selling yourself. Believe that you are capable, smart, and can do what you set out to do.

Confidence overall will help you lead a happier life, so there’s no reason to avoid it.

Let go of the negative voices telling you it’s not possible. Tell them to go to hell and repeat to yourself that YOU can. The only person getting in the way of that is YOU.

Still unsure?

Here are my favorite books to get your feeling like a bad ass: GirlBoss by Sophia Amoruso, The 7 Habits of Highly Successful People by Stephen Covey, Girl Code by Cara Alwill LeybaLean In by Sheryl Sandberg, and You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero.

#3 Become More Organized

If you’ve ever been to the gym without a workout plan in place, you’ve likely spent lots of time glancing around for something to do, or headed to the treadmill to pretend like you know what you’re doing.

The same thing applies in everyday life.

If you aren’t organized with your time and your to-do list, you’ll likely spend most of your day trying to figure out what to tackle next, instead of getting things done.

The good news is that if you take the time to get organized and plan your day ahead, things will quickly begin falling into place.

Getting organized may seem daunting at first, but if you’re consistent, it won’t be long before it becomes a habit.

Personally, I like to use old school pen/paper planners, such as the Erin Condren Life Planner or an A5 planner by Filofax, but there are plenty of tools to help you get organized.

If a physical planner is not exactly your thing, try a digital app, or the calendar on your phone.

Honestly, it doesn’t matter how you get organized, just as long as you do! So, try a few different things to find what works.

The best organization tool for you will be one that you enjoy using, one that keeps you on track, and one that has space for everything you need to jot down.

As a bonus, planning your day, and writing down all of your to-dos, helps relieve you from stress by allowing you to get things out of your mind and onto paper.

#4 Stop Comparing Yourself to Others

Social media has made it incredibly easy for us to compare our accomplishments and our lifestyle with that of others. But don’t fall into this trap!

When we compare ourselves to others, we waste valuable time comparing when instead we could be out there doing.

Don’t be consumed by what other people have or do.

Keep in mind that people only post what they want others to see. So while someone’s life may look perfect on Instagram, that’s not necessarily the case.

We all have flaws, problems, and worries, that’s what makes us unique, so stop comparing yourself. It’s just not worth it!

Use social media as a means to connect with others positively, to get inspired and motivated, rather than using it as a measure to see who is better.

#5 Challenge Yourself

You should never reach a point where you stop learning. No matter where you are in life, you should never stop pushing yourself to be better.

Challenge yourself to learn something new, to pick up a new skill, to adopt a new hobby or to learn a new language.

Developing new skills is exciting, and it opens the possibility of meeting new people, pursuing career opportunities that you didn’t think you qualified for, enhancing your resume, and having fun.

Yes, learning can be fun!

In fact, things can get quite boring when you stop learning. That’s why you often see successful people leave one great job for another – because they’ve learned everything they possibly could, and they’ve given it their all, so in retrospect, it’s time for a new challenge.

Challenges help us grow, so don’t be intimidated by them. Embrace them, seek them, and conquer them!

As the new year begins, try not to get overwhelmed by everything you have planned. Start off by taking note of everything you want to accomplish, and consider these 5 resolutions to help you get there.

If there are any resolutions you think should be included here, feel free to add them in the comments, I’d love to read about them.

6 Reasons Why I Refused to take my Husbands Name

If you’ve been around for a while, you probably know that I’m married.

(Sorry, guys. Ha!)

In fact, I’ve been happily married (yes, that’s a thing) for over two years now.

What you might not know is that I didn’t take my husband’s last name.

Yes. That’s right.

We had a ceremony, said our I do’s, but at the end of the day our mail still comes home under two different names.

 

But despite the fact that it’s the 21st century, people still get baffled by the news.

Usually, they’ll tilt their head a little and say something along the lines of:

“What do you mean you didn’t take his name?”

 

“He was okay with that?”

Oh, and let’s not forget my personal favorite

“I would never let my woman do that!”

OK, I get it.

It’s not that common.

I’m going against thousands of people that follow this tradition.  And while I respect everyone’s decision, I feel the need to clarify my point of view.

So, for those that can’t fathom the idea, and in an effort to clear up all the confusion, here are the main reasons I refused to change my name.

 

1. It’s who I am.

As cliche as it may sound, my name forms part of who I am. It’s how I’ve always been identified. And I don’t think there’s any reason marriage should change this.

More importantly, my husband fell in love with me. And what could be more me than my last name, which reflects my origin and culture?

 

2. I owe it to myself.

While I haven’t exactly accomplished everything on my list, I’ve worked hard to be where I am today. There’s no denying that I owe a lot of this to my husband, but he is only one piece of the rather large puzzle.

At the end of the day, I owe myself that recognition—shall we say, in the form of a diploma, hanging on a wall in my office?

 

3. I was no damsel in distress.

Despite the negative connotation of the word, I wasn’t a maiden looking to be rescued. My husband and I, are no different from each other. So why should anyone assume my identity is disposable?

 

4. Screw tradition!

In case you didn’t know, the law initially required married women to use their husband’s surname for a variety of things. This was primarily because the law viewed wedded couples as a whole. As a result, men were the only ones that could vote, own property, etc.

Unfortunately, this held true until the 1970s, when several intelligent people finally realized how nonsensical this was.

 

5. It’s the only thing I have left of my father.

This is a tough one, but I’ll try to keep it short. My father was never around, and while I should perhaps want nothing more than to remove any trace of him, it’s the only thing I have left, and I can’t seem to let it go.

 

6. We’re united by a lot more than the syllables in our names.

My husband and I share a life together. We share hopes, dreams, fears, and so much more. Taking his name would have no tangible effect on our relationship.

 

So there you have it.

In the end, there is no right or wrong.

But, to me it’s relatively simple:

I kept my name because it’s mine.

 

My husband respects my decision because he loves me and he knows I that I do too.

 

Women aren’t objects. They come with a mind and an identity of their own.

What do you think about women keeping their maiden name?

Go ahead, let me have it.

Grad School Is Not for the Faint of Heart

It’s been three days since I started school and I can already feel the sleep deprivation and lack of social life starting to creep in.

It’s actually funny because I used to complain about undergrad not being challenging enough and wellit’s safe to say that I no longer have that problem!

Today, was especially tough.

I made careless mistakes on a quiz and got my head torn apart by time value of money and perpetuity.

me + finance = recipe for disaster

On the bright side, I wasn’t the only one struggling. So, it’s nice to know that I’m not at this alone.

So, before I go off burying my head in books for the rest of the evening, I found it adequate to remind myself why I’m here and why no oneabsolutely no one, should give up on their dreams:

a) Nothing worthwhile comes easy
b) It’s impossible to grow without pushing yourself
c) You never truly fail, unless you give up
d) Things are never as bad as they seem in the moment
e) It’s okay to feel overwhelmed

So, there you have it!

That will be my mantra for the remainder of the year. But for now, off I go to study and of course, eat my weight in ice cream.

We’ve Officially Moved!

Six years ago, German and I moved to Austin with nothing but clothes and a few hand me downs that fit in the back of a little red car.

We had no bed, no couch, no dining table and very little money.

A few weeks ago, the pattern repeated itself.

Only this time, we had to sell our first home and seriously declutter in order to fit everything in our new (much smaller) space.

Since our decision to move, we’ve gotten several concerned looks from people who don’t understand why we’d leave our comfortable lifestyle and beautiful home so I can pursue—yet another degree.

My response to that is that we’re crazy.

Yes, that’s right.

We’re completely and totally insane!

I, for one, find it exhilarating.

I mean c’mon, what could possibly be more satisfying that leaving my safety net and secure job to pursue a career in something I’ve always wanted?!

Journal Entry, 2010

A friend of mine joked about how I’d be paying school loans the rest of my life. She sounded so certain about it.

But instead of being upset, I just stood back thinking about her significantly larger car loan.

I just can’t wrap my head around the idea that someone is willing to spend more money on a vehicle, than they are to invest in their education.

Meanwhile, I drive around in my modestly size Corolla, that doesn’t have the luxury of self-warming seats.

And you know what?

I’m perfectly okay with that.

I’m okay with still having to turn a key to start my car. I’m okay with the lack of leather seats and GPS.

While everyone’s allowed to spend their money as they please, I’m okay with neglecting a few things in exchange for others.

So, for those that still have comments about what we’re doing, I’ll say this: It takes balls to drop everything the way we have.

There, I said it.

Leaving the place we called home was not easy, but we did it because we believe there’s better things waiting for us.

And no matter where you are in life, you should always strive for better!

I’m Going to Grad School!

Last Friday, I got admitted into my graduate program of choice.

And while a simple status update on Facebook would’ve probably sufficed, I felt the need for more.

I started my application in mid-February, mildly underestimating the process.

Juggling school, work, grad school applications, and exam preparation, was tough.

But, between restless days and a non-existent social life, I did it!

That morning, as I was walking towards the cafeteria at work to get a cup of coffee, I saw their email just sitting in my inbox, waiting to be read.

I immediately froze.

Sure, I was excited. But to be honest, I was also scared.

I rushed over to the universities website, typed in my ID and password and stared blankly at the screen without clicking over to the next page.

Just then it hit me.

T H I S  I S  I T!

This is the moment I’ve been anxiously awaiting for months. This is the moment that defines a lot of other things to come.

I’m about to find out if I’ve been accepted.

But, what if I don’t get in?

What if I’m not good enough?

The decision was made too fast, so it must be bad news!

All these thoughts flooded my mind, but just before I could compose a different scenario in my head, I logged in.

And there it was:

“Congratulations! I am pleased to inform you that …”

At last, I could breathe.

I can’t wait to start this next chapter in my life. I can’t wait to take it all in. I can’t wait for the highs, the lows, and the concept of it all.

While I know that grad school will be about ten times harder than undergrad, I’m excited to take on this new challenge.

P.S.
I’d like to thank Jenny Moore, Josh Brodesky, Lynnette Gonzales, and Vince Guzman for helping me with letters of recommendation and advice.

I will forever be thankful for your kind words and support.

Hook’em!

Dagne Dover: The tote you’ll love

Quality handbags are hard to come across. Some are too big, some are too small. Some aren’t practical, while others are flimsy and bad quality. To make matters worse, you probably have five or more bags in your closet that you just don’t love. I get it, finding the perfect bag is a hard thing to do.

Last year I was in the exact same place you are. I was searching for a bag that would hold my everyday necessities. I wanted something: practical, organized, structured, timeless, chic. I knew what I wanted, but I didn’t know where I could find it. That is until I stumbled across the amazing Dagne Dover.

At Dagne Dover, our philosophy is, “You are what you carry.” A cavernous black-hole bag makes you feel just as disorganized as its contents—but a sophisticated, organized handbag makes you feel ready for anything.

Dagne Dover is a company that prides itself on organization. Their bags were designed with the perfect spot for everything! Dagne Dover Mini in Linen Market

Sturdy zipper

As you can see, this bag was really well thought out.

– Great quality

– Detachable crossbody strap

– Detachable key strap

– Comes with removable water bottle holder

– Has sturdy zippers great quality

– It’s easy to clean

– Will never go out of style

– It’s well structured

What’s your go-to everyday bag? I’d love to know in the comments.

xoxo,

Welcome to The Falconette

Ahhh my very first blog post. I can’t express how happy I am right now. Between reserving my domain and getting everything all setup, it’s been somewhat chaotic. After a few sleepless nights, however, it finally feels like everything is falling into place.

Little known fact for those who don’t know me, I love to write. I mean it… I LOVE to write. As a kid, I remember walking around with my tried and true composition notebook covered with nickelodeon stickers on the front. It’s no joke! In fact, I think that notebook might still be around at my mother’s house somewhere.

Anyways, I used to write about everything!

I’d pretend I was a teacher, writing down lesson plans. I’d write about my dreams. I’d write about my day. The list goes on and on. Throughout the years, I’ve lost touch with that aspect of my writing, but I’ve decided to rekindle with what might just be my biggest passion of all (sorry Sephora!). I’ve decided to combine my love for beauty, and my passion for writing here at melbatellez.com.

I truly hope you all like that you see, or should I say read?