I’ve always been a New Years Resolution kind of gal. Every year, on New Year’s Eve, I write a list of things that I want to accomplish for the year, pray over it, and never look at the list again! So naturally, my manifestation process is effective, right? Lol.

Well with the year coming to a close, I decided to look at my vision board to check off everything I had accomplished for the year and boy was I distraught. Out of all the images that were visual placeholders for my goals – I had only accomplished one thing. ONE THING!! I took a step back to think about what the hell I had been doing all year to only accomplish one goal, and the answer was evident – I wasn’t focused.

Staying focused on your goals is seemingly hard especially if you’re like me and suffer from imposter syndrome and are constantly doubting yourself. Because self-doubt is constantly in your mental rotation, it’s hard to push through with what you need to do to accomplish your goals! So what do you do moving forward? You restrategize!

I sat down and came up with a new strategy for accomplishing my goals in 2020, and I wanted to share them with you!

Step 1: What Were Your Goals

You set these goals back in January or February and you might not remember the purpose and intention behind your goals. Write the goal down again and jot a few words or phrases that resonate with you on what the goal means to you and why you set it.

Step 2: What did you do to accomplish these goals?

This is the big one here because it forces you to be completely honest with yourself about the work you’ve put in to make your goals and dreams a reality. Write down every single thing you did this year to either work towards or accomplish your goals. Visually seeing the list will help you realize what worked for you and what didn’t work for you and give you some ideas on how to move forward in the future.

Step 3: What didn’t you do to accomplish these goals?

Your goals weren’t accomplished for a reason! Similar to the previous step, writing down what you didn’t do to accomplish these goals is equally important.

Step 4: How are you going to do better?

Once you have your lists compiled, write another list detailing a plan of action of what you will do to achieve your goals in the new year. How many times a week will you spend on your goal? How much money will you invest in your goal? Is networking required for your goal? How will you do it and where? These types of questions are important in refreshing and redirecting your goals.

To help bring it in perspective, here’s how the above steps look in action:

Goal: My goal for 50 Shades of Raee this year was to land at least 2 ads, 1 sponsorship, and hit 1000 followers on IG.

Did I accomplish that goal?  No.

What did I do to work towards/accomplish this goal?

At the start of the year, I was very active on the blog and on IG. I was very consistent with my posts and did a lot of research to prepare myself for reaching out to brands.

What did I not do to work towards/accomplish this goal?

In August, I completely stopped blogging and being active on social media due to work constraints. I wasn’t able to find a happy balance between work, personal, and blogging, so I gave blogging up – again. Since relaunching my blog in 2017, I have done this every year. I also was not consistent on social media to grow my follower count.

What will I do to work towards/accomplish this goal next year?

I will create a plan/schedule in order to help me balance work life and blogging. I will also remain consistent on IG by posting quality images and tips at least 3 times a week. For the blog, I will post twice a week as well. I will also create a list of brands to reach out and will pitch at least once a week.

This is a realistic example of one of my goals that I’ve actually already started working towards! Remember you don’t have to wait until the new year to work on or set goals! And if you still need a push of motivation, check out the words of encouragement Yara Shahidi’s mother poured into me about going after your dreams!

I hope these tips work for you! I will keep y’all updated throughout the year of course so we can see how well my advice works for me this year too!

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list of 5 must watch television shows

As the summer comes to an end for me, and I head back to work for the new year, I’m taking a moment to reminisce on a few shows that caught my attention all summer! This list is elite [so there’s nothing to debate lol], but check out my shows, add them to your list, and get your life!

1.) Grown-ish

Image result for grown ish season 3

Anyone who knows me and follows me on Instagram knows how obsessed I am with Grown-ish! Everything about this show is iconic from the casting [the show stars Yara Shahidi, Chloe and Halle Bailey, and Trevor Jackson], styling to the musical choices to the subject matter. Even more importantly, Luka Sabbat. Lol. You can catch him and everyone else on the show every Wednesday on ABC’s Freeform!

2.) Money Heist [Netflix]

Image result for money heist season 3

I stumbled across this show thinking it was a documentary on bank robbery’s and fell in love 20 minutes in. The show is set in Columbia and follows a host of bank robbers and their hostages. The show currently has 3 seasons and while each episode is roughly 45 minutes long, it’s totally worth it and full of twists and turns! The character development is A-1as well the character you start off hating will be the one you fall in love with the most! Money Heist is currently streaming on Netflix.

3.) Light as a Feather [Hulu]

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Wheww chillay!!! Talk about DRAMA! Honey this show is a good mix of Gossip Girl and Pretty Little Liars! It’s a murder mystery show about a group of friends who befriend the new girl in town. They quickly discover that she isn’t all that she seems when random events start happening to them! They band together to try and take her down! You can catch this show streaming on Hulu!

4.) Slasher

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Shoutout to my girl Shika for putting me on game with this show! Similar to American Horror Story, every season of Slasher has a different “theme,” but the premise is the same. There is a ‘Slasher’ that’s on the loose and everyone is trying to find out who it is before they get killed off. I promise ya’ll this show will have you on edge and every time you think you know who the Slasher is, you’d be surprised! Slasher is currently in its third season on Netflix.

5.) On My Block

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Unsurprisingly enough, my students told me about this show claiming it to be a must-watch. After giving it a chance, I easily understood why they felt this way. This is one that Netflix got right. OMB follows a group of childhood friends as they navigate life in the hood. It’s a cultural comedy that focuses on millennial life, love, and friendships! Also, Ruby & Jamal are scene stealers in every season and are a must-watch! On My Block is currently filming season 3, but you can catch seasons 1 & 2 on Netflix now!

Honorable Mentions:

  • Pose [FX]
  • Dear Black People [Netflix]
  • Steven Universe [Hulu]
  • Euphoria [HBO]
  • What If [Netflix]

What are some of your must-watch shows?? Let me know!!

xoxo,

Raee

5-things-new-bloggers-need

Ok, you’ve spent the last 5 months deciding on if you wanted to start a blog or not. After constant deliberation, you finally take the plunge and go for it! You’ve been posting things and taking cute pictures, but you’re ready to take it up a notch! What do you need? Today I’m sharing 5 must-have tools every new blogger needs if you’re starting out or ready to take your blog up a notch!

1.) Tripod

This goes without saying, but a floor tripod is a must-have as a blogger for photoshoots. I’d suggest making sure you get one with an iPhone attachment for when you’re creating content.

Image result for camera tripod

My Picks:

2.) Ring Light –

Ring Lights are vital for creating clear, and visually appealing content! Floor ring lights are clutch, but so are desktop ring lights if you’re creating makeup videos or recording YouTube videos! Again, the type of ring light is dependent upon the content you’re creating.

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My Picks:

3.) Table Top Tripod –

Just like tabletop ring lights are clutch, so are tabletop tripods with moveable legs. I’ve been in a situation where my floor top tripod broke on me and all I had was my tabletop tripod! I definitely consider it a must-have.

Image result for table top tripod

My Picks:

  • These type of tripods are a must! They are flexible and can wrap around anything, so they’re perfect for photoshoots on the go!
  • This bad boy is coming in at $10 so it’s perfect if you’re on a budget!
  • This tripod not only is compatible with a tabletop, but it also extends to be a full tripod!

**Extra Tip: You don’t necessarily need a tabletop tripod for creating content! Grab some books, stack them up, and prop your phone against a cup or a candle!

4.) Soft-Box Lights –

I honestly didn’t see the importance of softbox lights until I got them. For the most part, all of my content was filmed during the day time for the natural light. But THEN I got hip to softbox lights and BAYBEE…. the quality! Basically, you need lights to take your content up a notch!

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My Picks:

5.) Camera/Phone Remote –

A remote has saved my life so many times when I’ve been filming and I didn’t realize how useful it was until mine broke and I didn’t have it anymore! Lol. So from personal experience, you NEED a remote that will sync with your camera or phone so you can start and stop your picture taking and video filming.

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My Pick:

**If you have a camera, getting a remote specific to that is a good hack too!

And there you go! My top 5 tools that every new blogger needs! What’s your go-to tool? Let me know below!

xoxo,

Raee

a list of 5 things to purchase for new bloggers to take their content to the next level.

As the summer is wrapping up, one of the banes of my teaching experience is gearing to make its appearance: classroom decor shopping.

Decorating the classroom is fun, but shopping for it is so disrespectfully expensive, that it makes one weary to purchase much of anything, because after all…. the kids are just going to destroy it right? Well after spending hundreds of dollars every year, just for my high school juniors [yep, you read that right], to tear up, rip up, and break everything I bought, I vowed never to pay full price for decorations again! This year, I’m taking a different approach – the cheaper approach – to decorating my classroom this year, and I’ve decided my share my three tips on how you can too!

1.) Hit Up the Dollar Store

The dollar store – more specifically the Dollar Tree is my favorite place to hit up when it’s time to decorate. The same paper border you’d typically find in your local teacher store that’s usually $8 a pack, is $1 here! If you want a little glitz and glam, then head to the party aisle to get party streamers that correlate to your colors too. The dollar store is also where you can stock up on classroom supplies [pencils, pens, and highlighters], books for your classroom library, and rewards [candy, pencils, and stickers] for your students as well!

2.) Get Creative

You don’t need to spend your whole summer check on decor. What I love to do is buy paper plates and buy spray paint that goes with my color theme, add cut out letters [either bought or made at work] and use them to create signs/decorations or even border for my walls. Another cheap option is instead of buying contact paper from Amazon, go to a fabric store [my go-to is Walmart] and buy a yard or two of fabric. Use the fabric as backdrops for your bulletin boards. If you want to go the free route, get butcher paper that is at your campus to serve as your backdrop.

Another idea for customized pencil/pen cup holders is getting the glass jars, adding Modpodge [Walmart] to it, and sprinkling colored glitter over them! Seal it back with Modpodge and you now have customized cup holders true to your classroom and nice to your pockets.

Other stores I love to check out for stuff on the low are:

  • 5 Below
  • Walmart/ Target
  • Amazon
  • Marshalls
  • Ross

3.) Find Inspiration

This is the easiest tip! One of my favorite things to do a few weeks before school starts is by scouring YouTube and Pinterest for inspiration or tips to DIY my classroom. Both sites are literal goldmines of ideas and tips on creating your dream classroom for less than $50 – $100 too!

Well, that’s all I have for now! Cheers to a great school year & happy shopping!

xoxo,

Raee

picture of a classroom for tips on how to decorate a classroom for cheap.

monday-motivation-shine-bright

For the longest time, I would get so annoyed when my friends or family would always hit me up for advice or to be the voice of reason. I didn’t see myself as that and didn’t get why they did either. I would complain to my mom about it, and she’d just say: people are drawn to you. Live with it!

People being drawn to me is something I never fully accepted until recently. During a Sunday sermon, the pastor emphasized how people who other people are drawn to, are in essence a lighthouse – we shine from the inside out.

This reminds me of the birth of baby Jesus and how the wise men followed the shining star to get to him. As a baby, Jesus himself was the light – people came to Him because something showed brightly in Him. [Matthew 2: 1-8] Now I’m definitely not saying we are like Jesus, but I will say that we are shining lights and need to embrace that rather than reject it.

A lighthouse by definition is a tower or structure designed to emit light and serve as a navigational aid for others. So what does this mean to you? It means that you were chosen to be a resource to other people. There’s a reason why you are the friend that everyone calls or texts to unload their problems, the coworker that everyone vents too, or the family member that everyone uses as a springboard during family strife. There is something in you that people see and are drawn to – everyone isn’t blessed enough to be able to be that person.

So the next time you’re questioning why everyone is always coming to you, don’t question it! Be thankful and continue going about your day shining like the light that you are!

Have a blessed week!

xoxo,

Raee

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