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Archive for the ‘Lifestyle’ Category

The NEW Rules Of Texting You Need To Know NOW!

February 5th, 2016 by Christen

Chances are you were taught proper etiquette regarding dining and communicating, but what about texting? Whether you’re texting friends, family or co-workers, there are rules of texting etiquette that are important to observe – I’ve teamed up with Progressive Life Lanes to share the new rules for texting etiquette in 2016 and beyond below.



texting etiquette



Stop sending group texts in 2016

You’ve found yourself in the rabbit hole of group texts before, and because many people don’t realize they’re replying to everyone when they respond to group texts, it can get really annoying, really fast. When at all possible, try to communicate directly with people, even if it means sending a few texts. Or if you are making plans, consider sending an email.


Steer clear of making common texting mistakes

In the brave new world of communication, it’s important to avoid common texting mistakes that you may not have even known you’re guilty of. Think of including a smile with words in your texts. Using polite words, like please and thanks, can often soften a relayed message. And avoid using curse words or texting in all caps. There’s a fine line when it comes to delivering short and concise messages with a pleasant tone–but if you read the message aloud to yourself before sending, you should be able to analyze how well the text will be received.


Know when and where you should put the phone away 

The #1 rule for texting is do not text while operating any sort of motor vehicle, period. According to the National Safety Council, using a cell phone while behind the wheel of a car makes you four times more likely to be at risk of an auto accident. You should put your phone away and avoid texting in movie theaters, at dinner tables, and please take a break from texting from the bathroom in 2016. Eliminating texting from these locations will not only keep you safe and sanitary, but will also keep you courteous to those around you.


Looking for more texting etiquette rules to keep you on the right track?  Check out all the suggestions at Progressive Life Lanes today!


Eddie The Eagle Is A Movie Filled With Hustle, Courage And Heart!

February 5th, 2016 by Christen

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Eddie The Eagle through their partnership with POPSUGAR. While I was compensated by POPSUGAR to write a post about Eddie The Eagle, all opinions are my own.


eddie the eagle


Be tenacious, don’t take no for an answer, fly like Eddie The Eagle. Who knew that the feel-good story about an unlikely Olympian could be applicable to anyone that’s ever had a dream? During a recent advanced screening of “Eddie The Eagle”, I’ve discovered how inspiration can arise when you least expect it and how an unbelievable quest can become achievable with the right frame of mind.

“The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not winning but taking part; the essential thing in life is not conquering but fighting well.”
– Pierre de Coubertin / Olympic Games Founder


Inspired by true events, Eddie the Eagle is a feel-good story about Michael “Eddie” Edwards (Taron Egerton), an unlikely but courageous British ski-jumper who never stopped believing in himself – even as an entire nation was counting him out. With the help of a rebellious and charismatic coach (played by Hugh Jackman), Eddie takes on the establishment and wins the hearts of sports fans around the world by making an improbable and historic showing at the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics.


eddie the eagle


If you love great movies with a loveable “under dog” storyline, Eddie The Eagle is it! Actor Taron Egerton will have you laughing and cheering from your seat leaving you wanting more and more.





Eddie is an excellent example of courage under fire. Even while everyone counted him out and didn’t believe in him, he believed in himself and ultimately made a believer out of everyone. There are plenty of times where I’ve allowed self-doubt to hinder me from becoming my best self. After viewing the movie, I’ve learned that sometimes you have to take a stance and don’t allow other’s opinions to sway you from becoming the best you can be. It’s a movie with unbelievable heart and positivity that’ll truly leave you feeling hopeful about endeavors of your own.


eddie the eagle



Discover what makes this movie a hit by connecting with Eddie The Eagle movie on Twitter, Facebook and in theaters February 26th.

This Caffeine Bracelet Will Cure Your Craving For Your Next Cup Of Coffee

February 5th, 2016 by Tech Staff

Starbucks better watch out!  Have you heard of the latest innovation in wearable technology? A new caffeine bracelet called Joule aims to help coffee-drinkers avoid the spike and crash. It contains FDA-approved patches that deliver caffeine through the skin. The body absorbs each patch (the equivalent of a cup of coffee) over the course of four hours — giving wearers long-lasting alertness without the jitteriness.


caffeine bracelet


The company just launched an Indiegogo campaign, and has currently raised $6,448 out of $15,000 needed.  There’s no question with the amount of national print and tv press the Joule caffeine bracelet has received, this thing will be in full production sooner than later.  What makes the Joule caffeine bracelet so amazing? The FDA-approved patch dispatches caffeine immediately — faster than drinking coffee — and has the same amount of caffeine as a medium cup of joe.




So just how much with the caffeine patch and bracelet cost you? The Joule caffeine bracelet will cost you $29 via the Indiegogo campaign. It comes with 30 caffeine patches, and you can always buy more separately when you run out. For you timepiece connoisseurs, there’s another option available as well, The Joule Time model costs $99 on the Indiegogo page.  Keep in mind, while you’re searching for your next jolt of caffeine, the Joule caffeine bracelet and Joule time model is not kid-friendly and you need to be 18 or over to use.


Are  you interested in changing your caffeine intake with the Joule caffeine bracelet?  Would you use it?  Share your thoughts below!


Let’s Talk About The Reality Of Making Money Using Social Media On ESSENCE Live

February 4th, 2016 by Christen

Last week, I had the distinct pleasure of talking social media, branding and the business of making money online on ESSENCE Live. Joined by Crissle West of The Read, Whitney White of Naptural 85, we talked about the life of social media entrepreneurs, common misconceptions and how we built wealth online.


Essence Live


Making money online isn’t child’s play.  Nowadays, there’s serious corporate budgets behind social media campaigns, social media influencers as brand ambassadors and more readily available now more than ever before.  Within my first year of blogging, I’ve made money as an ambassador of Samsung, worked with Verizon, Ford and Toyota.  Check out some of my thoughts on monetizing influence with ESSENCE Live host Dana Blair (and a few bonus thoughts / and video) below.


“Are you making money online?”

Yes.  While I’m not (yet) making millions, I make a very comfortable living because of my social media brand online.  While I’m not making it rain anywhere, I’ve been taught that it’s better to be humble and unassuming about how much you make (like Steve Jobs and Oprah) rather than boasting and (probably lying) about your net worth.


“What’s the good/bad of monetizing social media?”

The good part about being your own boss is the freedom you have to do what you love, and you get paid while doing it.  The downside that I didn’t anticipate just how much of that freedom is sucked dry by obsessing over scheduled posts, speaking engagement details and other revenue producing components.


“Final Thoughts?”

People often have the misconception that you have to be a huge social media superstar to make money online.  That’s simply not true.  There are plenty of social media influencers with hundreds of thousands of fans and followers and they’re trying to figure out how to make money, just like the blogger that just began branding online.  The difference between the ones that succeed and the ones that fail is the perception.  If you have a strategic goal of who you want to speak to, what you want to accomplish, when you want to make money and why brands should want to work with you – you’ve catapulted your brand far ahead beyond anyone else.  Social media size doesn’t always matter.


Check out the abbreviated version of last week’s ESSENCE Live segment and let me know what you think below!



Are you interested in learning how to monetize your social influencer better?  Sign up for Act Like A Blogger, Think Like A Brand newsletter and get upcoming opportunities, webinars and eBooks to help you know and grow delivered directly to your inbox today!



Five Stages Of Your Digital Detox To Become Refreshed, Connected & Balanced

February 3rd, 2016 by Christen

From the beginning of smartphones and apps we’ve learned the digital doctrine of ABC’s (Always Be Connected.)  Now with the help of social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram – we’re obsessed with starring at our phones 50, 100 and even up to 300 times a day.  Many people choose to dedicate the beginning of the year to fresh new year’s resolutions for fitness, finances and even digital health and wellness.  I personally decided to refresh by going on a much needed digital detox.


digital detox


There are plenty of benefits & a few setbacks that a digital detox can bring in your life – discover the five stages of a digital detox and how starting healthier digital habits can leave your refreshed and connectedly balanced for the new year below.



Preparing for a break from digital devices and social media takes determination and having a complete goal in mind.  Whether it’s spending time working on interpersonal relationships or just taking a break from feeding the social media beast preparing for your digital detox takes time.

Benefits – Whether going on a digital diet and minimizing your time on your smartphone, tablet or other electronics or slowing up your social media intake on Facebook or Instagram, taking the right approach on how far to take your digital detox will only work out if you determine what you want to get out of your detox in the long run. 



You’re bound to get anxious once you determine to take the leap into a detox like this but remember though this confrontation can be difficult at first, the pay off is significant. Many detoxers find a real world connectedness that enriches and enhances our lives in a way no Wi-Fi connection can.

Benefits – Some of the changes you should anticipate after a digital detox are more balanced and calmer calmer feeling in your life due to periodically stopping the continual digital exposure throughout your day. You’ll feel more rested, more aware, more present, more productive and less overwhelmed and stressed out. You’ll also feel more connected to your work, love relationships, family, friends and yourself.



After taking the leap and going through with your digital detox, to your relief you’ll find that it’s actually easier than you thought it would be.  After all, you’ve lived a life before gadgets and social media so surely you’ll be able to conquer what life is like without it.

Benefits:  You can be so preoccupied with your digital devices that it’s all too easy to inadvertently sacrifice time, relationships, sleep, focus, productivity and balance in your life. Many people are not even aware of the toll their extensive usage of digital devices costs them until they have suffered a loss or upset because of this.  The relief you’ll experience during the digital detoxification process is just the beginning to a life of balance and how happy you’re truly feel once you complete your challenge.



Once you reach a level of contentment with your digital detox, you’ll find yourself breathing a sigh of relief and coming to terms with just how dependent you were on “likes”, “shares”, “comments” and “checkins”. The digital age has changed the levels of transparency that we expect from ourselves and others.  Keep it real with yourself about your addiction and what you’d like to gain from your detox and instantly feel the weight of the world wide web off your shoulders and the freedom to live your life the way you want to live.

Benefits:  There’s a saying “The first step in solving a problem is to recognize that it does exist.” (-Zig Ziglar) The moment you become transparent with yourself, you’re able to recognize what areas in life that you’d like to improve.  When you have a digital detox you feel more rested and less stressed. Who wouldn’t want to feel less stressed?



Reaching the final stage of your digital detoxification is where you begin to feel all the benefits in a euphoric way.  You’ll begin to feel more rested, more aware, more present, more productive and less overwhelmed and stressed out. You’ll also feel more connected to work, love relationships, family, friends and to yourself. This time of self awareness will empower you to rebel against the norm of social media use and will make you feel like a maverick and true trendsetter of creating a balanced life.

Benefits:  Creating a life lived on your terms will empower you to own your happiness and create long-term, meaningful connections with coworkers, friends, family and more.  The biggest benefit of them all, you’ll live a happier and healthier life!


After completing my digital detox for the month of January, I feel more relaxed and have a new perspective on how I use social media.  After all, isn’t social media supposed to be used to facilitate connections?  If FOMO (fear of missing out) is a little too strong in your life, maybe a digital detox is just what you need to jumpstart your new year.

Have you tried a digital detox yet? What was the biggest benefit for you?

How I’m Using My Journey In Technology To Honor Trailblazers And Create A Legacy For The Future

February 1st, 2016 by Christen


In honor of the African-American trailblazers who help shape American history, AT&T celebrates the people, movements and tools empowering positive change. Black History Month is a lot more than 28 days recognizing our history, it’s also a time where we identify how our history has shaped us into who we are today.  Over the years, I’ve found inspiration from many African-American leaders and trailblazers in the community and technology fields.  One innovator that I truly identify with is Dr. Shirley Ann Jackson, the first African-American woman to earn a Ph.D. at MIT.


att 28 days


Dr. Shirley Ann Jackson used her knowledge of physics to foster advances in telecommunications research while working at Bell Laboratories. Dr. Jackson conducted breakthrough basic scientific research that enabled others to invent the portable fax, touch tone telephone, solar cells, fiber optic cables, and the technology behind caller ID and call waiting.

Before women in stem was a huge initiative, Dr. Shirley Ann Jackson was making strides in the industry which has made it easier for many women like me to explore interests in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math.  Because of her efforts, I’ve been able to create moments that matter teaching future entrepreneurs at Michigan State University and conferences around the country.


att 28 days


“Success isn’t about how much money you make, it’s about the difference you make in people’s lives.”Michelle Obama


ATT 28 days innovate state


Recently, I’ve had the opportunity to partner with my alma mater Michigan State University and the Spartan Innovations Entrepreneurial program.  My commitment to the program included speaking to over 100 students of all colors, ages and backgrounds to share my journey in the technology space.  In addition to sharing my journey, I had the pleasure to advise many of them on their entrepreneurial and innovation path.  As a former low-income and high-risk student, it meant the world to me to speak with students who may have a similar education route as I did. Moments like these don’t just matter, but they shape the way you view influence and creating a legacy for others.  Becoming an advocate for Stem and entrepreneurial education is just the beginning to creating a legacy of my own.


ATT 28 days Black History Month


How are you celebrating Black History Month and making your mark?  What historical trailblazers inspire you to create moments that matter of your own?  Discover more historical moments and leaders on

[Ready, Set, Download!] 6 Secret Apps Every Hustler, Boss Chick And Entrepreneur Needs

January 28th, 2016 by Christen

According to Fast Company, there are over half a million new businesses (530,000) created each month.  That’s a whole lot of entrepreneurs!

I realized at an early age that the entrepreneur lifestyle was for me. In 3rd grade, I made the decision that there would be no one who could out match my hustle.  Almost 30 years and 5 businesses later, I’ve been recognized as a top leader among my career peers, featured in business magazines and held public speaking forums across the country on the art of the entrepreneur enterprise.

Let’s face it, the entrepreneur life ain’t for everyone, there are long hours, private ideation sessions, and plenty of research required to build a successful business – and then there are business secrets that’ll help you avoid the mistakes of others and expedite your road to success. What’s the secret to Divas And Dorks’ success? Discover secret apps in my arsenal that fuels this successful business and discover why they’re secret apps every entrepreneur needs to succeed below!


Secret Apps For Entrepreneurs



Pennies Personal Money, Budget And Finance Manager:  If you can’t keep your personal finances in order, how do you expect to get your business budget together? Budgeting shouldn’t be hard work or boring. That’s why in Pennies you won’t find any charts, graphs or complicated diagrams. It’s personal finance made easy, it’s your money made simple. Should you spend or should you save? Pennies shows your spending and finance health with bold colours, helping you slow down or speed up to keep you on track. (Download Pennies App)




Shoeboxed: Get rid of your binders, folders and archaic filing systems and go digital (and green!) with Shoeboxed. Paper, receipts, business cards, forms, books = unnecessary clutter on my desk.  There were days in the past where I simply wanted to take it all and trash it in one swift sweep of my arm over the top of my desk. This gem of a tool let’s you easily scan, take pictures using your mobile device, or even send them via snail mail anything and everything that you would like to save but not necessarily keep on your desk or in a drawer. (Download your free trial of Shoeboxed today)




Evernote: Evernote is my lifesaver and enables me to work more productively. First, what I love about it is that it works both for my personal and business life, and helps me manage the operational pieces of both. Also, I use it on the go. Life is fast and busy for all of us, and Evernote lets me carry everything with me. Wherever I go, I have all the information, checklists, and notes I need. It’s always there for me 24/7. (Download Evernote app)



Moleskine Timepage

Moleskine Timepage:  The most elegant calendar for your pocket and wrist, Timepage is a calendar designed to make every day more enjoyable and easy to navigate. Have all your calendars in one place, seamlessly integrated with weather forecasts, maps and contacts.  (I have six different calendars, so you know I need something simple and seamless that’ll work for me!)  Even on the Apple watch, you can see your day-by-day schedule for the next week, discover the weather, see how long until your next event and travel details and wrist tap reminders…ALL ON YOUR WRIST! Genius! (Download Moleskine Timepage)




17Hats:  What if there was a secret app that combines many of the apps you are likely using into a single flawless interface.  It’s creators have built 17hats with the entrepreneur in mind.  They have given us a suite of functions to from from sales leads to research and information gathering via an online questionnaire on to a proposal to hand off to your potential client.  17Hats doesn’t stop there – the ball continues rolling downhill to contract, invoicing and finally payment.  It’s like a fortune 500 company CRM system but designed for the single DIY’er.  It also doesn’t carry the big fortune 500 company price tag.  (Download your FREE trial of 17Hats)




Dropbox: Who doesn’t have a Dropbox account? But did you know you can run your entire business, using The Cloud? What would happen if your hard-drives were to be damaged in an accident or natural disaster?  Would you be able to recover from lost data and time?  You really need an off-site backup system in order to safeguard yourself against that kind of vulnerability.  An automatic backup is by far the easiest. Don’t make the mistake of buying storage space, computer storage and flash drives when Dropbox has everything you need and is as mobile as you!  (Upgrade for FREE Dropbox storage)



PDF Reader Pro

BONUS:  PDF Reader PRO Edition: There’s no longer an excuse to delay the closing of a deal! This app allows you to electronically edit and sign documents easily and securely. It also records and stores each document’s history, so you have automatic audit trails — saving you the time and trouble of backtracking in case the need arises. (Download PDF Reader PRO Edition)


These are just a few of my favorite apps that I can’t manage my hustle without.  Why make the same mistakes and try and fail with other apps when these award winning apps can get you on the right path to entrepreneurial success?  These apps aren’t just for business either, use them to manage family budgets, trip itineraries, photos, everyday receipts and more!  Being an entrepreneur isn’t just a career move, it’s a lifestyle!


Did I miss any other secret apps for entrepreneurs?  Share your favorite apps for entrepreneurs below!




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The App Every Entrepreneur Needs To Score The Best Workspace On The Go

January 27th, 2016 by Christen

As an entrepreneur, I spend roughly about 200+ days on the road traveling for work and play.  Getting critical work done on the go,  usually meant tracking down the nearest coffee shop to score caffeine and wifi.  Sometimes I’ve been lucky, but oftentimes the “Where’s the wifi” game didn’t always lead to the out of office productivity I needed.  After searching long and hard to find a space to work in, I’ve walked through doors that looked more like standing room only nightclubs, rather than work-friendly workspaces.  That’s until I discovered the best app for entrepreneurs that’s helped me score the best workspaces on the go – say hello to the WHA app.




Five Essential Business Apps To Get The Job Done


What’s WHA?  (Not to be confused with WhatsApp) WHA is short for Work Hard Anywhere and it’s kinda like the Yelp for hardworking creatives, freelancers, and entrepreneurs who work beyond the corporate cubicle.  As seen on Entrepreneur and Yahoo – WHA uses geolocation to identify what cafes and coworking spaces are around you, and then gives you the lowdown on whether or not there’s decent wifi, parking and seating. In other words, if time is money, this free app is worth its weight in gold for freelancers and other professionals on the go.


best apps for entrepreneurs


5 Apps Guaranteed To Guide Your Side Hustle Into A Career


The beauty of this app is that it isn’t limited to retail coffee shops or open locations with wifi.  The WHA tipping feature lets visitors leave relevant bits of information for one another, like drop-in rates for coworking spaces, operating hours for cafes and other need-to-know info. So the next time you find yourself traveling or exploring someplace new, you can work smarter than before with an app that keeps you in the know.  Get it for free in the iTunes App Store today & sign up to discover when the WHA app will be available for Android users here.


How do you find places to work on the go?  Share your tips for finding great workspaces below!

#StyleHack – The Modern Girl’s Guide To Thrifted Style With Dryel

January 15th, 2016 by Christen

As a busy woman on the go,  managing clients, deadlines all while looking cute doing so the pressure (and struggle) can get real, real quick.  There are times, we could all use a few life hacks or reset buttons for an edge up on everyday life.  Lucky for me, I got the chance to upgrade the way I keep clean with the ultimate style hack for anyone with a busier than normal lifestyle.  Discover how to find affordable style with Dryel and how it’s changed the way I keep my style so fresh and so clean below.


Style With Dryel – A Thrifter’s Asset

If you’ve ever rummaged through racks and racks of coats, dresses or shirts at a vintage shop, then you know there’s a certain aroma that most thrifted items can’t help but have.  I can’t begin to share the countless times that I’ve gone into thrifting boutiques and found one-of-a-kind pieces that I wanted to wear the same day.  While there are some dry cleaners that offer same day service, you’d be hard pressed to find one with nearly convenient hours as your in-home dryer machine. With Dryel, your next thrifted find is as good as new and ready to wear after a few minutes in your dryer.
style with Dryel
Throughout the years, I’ve learned the best way to keep evolving your style is to know the trends, but also know what works for you.  My style fluctuates from diva glam to sporty chic on any given day, from my favorite vintage Roberto Cavalli mink coat and leather Yankee ball cap, to my vintage inspired H&M jacket and thrifted fur collar — I love mixing it up every chance I get.  (The funny thing about my style is that I typically get the most compliments on a look that I barely invested much effort into!  #EasyChic). No matter what, the one thing that never changes is just how good Dryel’s at home cleaning system comes through in the clutch!
style with Dryel

A meeting that turns into a late night gala invitation?  Dryel handled it.  A thrifted Buffalo plaid smock perfect for a last minute girls day out? One quick cleaning later, instant style with Dryel handled it.  With Dryel’s easy to use cleaning system, I’m able to spend less time and money making trips to the dry cleaners and more time enjoying the things and people I love.  Dryel is more than a modern girl’s style hack, it’s a money-saving and time-saving hack that has changed my life!
Dryel is easy to use, cost effective and it extends the life of your closet – what more could you ask for? Clothes look newer, longer, with no fading, shrinking or stretching.  You’ve seen how I keep my winter, spring and summer style chic without breaking the bank with Dryel, now how about you?  You can find Dryel At-Home Dry Cleaner at retailers like Walmart and Target or get social and connect with Dryel on Facebook and Pinterest today.

Wondering If You’re Pregnant? There’s A Bluetooth Pregnancy Test For That! #CES2016

January 6th, 2016 by Tech Staff

Technology is changing the way we do everyday things – including the way women learn about pregnancy.  The first-ever digital pregnancy test that works with an app has just been revealed at CES and it aims to make the pregnancy process less daunting, thanks to a little more automation.  Say hello to First Response Pregnancy Pro stick, the physical test updates the brand’s Cycle & Ovulation app with the latest results in real time.


bluetooth pregnancy test first response

The at-home pregnancy test company First Response announced at International CES the first-ever Bluetooth-enabled pregnancy test, which syncs up with an app and houses all test results and dates in one spot.


bluetooth pregnancy test


Considering multiple pregnancy tests are often used to detect the hormone human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), which is found in the urine of pregnant women, spotting the hormone early allows her to know sooner and initiate prenatal care as close to conception as possible. This is First Response’s attempt at innovating and streamlining that process.

bluetooth pregnancy test First response app

The First Response Pregnancy Pro stick works alongside the app, which helps to determine a woman’s most fertile days, based on information added by the user. The app also houses articles, tips and resources, as well as distractions such as videos and other visuals while she waits for test results.

bluetooth pregnancy test First response app

The app can be used beyond determining the results, too; once pregnant, the built-in tools predict due date, pregnancy milestones, questions to ask the doctor, reminders about appointments and updates about the baby’s growth.

Like a traditional pregnancy test, the First Response Pregnancy Pro stick can only be used once. While a standard pregnancy test may coast about $8.99 to $15.95, the Bluetooth-enabled option has a suggested retail price between $14.99 and $21.99 (but you can grab a $3 off coupon here.) The app will be available as a free download for iOS and Android users this spring.

Would you use a Bluetooth-enabled pregnancy test during your journey to parenthood?  Share your comments below?

Looking for more breaking news and gadgets, gizmos and more found at CES 2016?  Visit all week long and even connect with us on TwitterFacebookYouTube and more today!  You don’t want to miss the action from the largest tech trade show in the world – it’s CES 2016!



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