#DSMonth Guest Blog Post by Nakita Pope, Founder of Branding Chicks


Happy Day 26 of #DigitalSisterhood Month! Happy #DigitalSisterhood Wednesday! Happy First Day of Kwanzaa – Umoja (Unity)!

Today, Digital Sisterhood Network is celebrating the voices of our community by sharing a guest blog post written by Nakita Pope, founder of Branding Chicks. Check out what Nakita has to say about the #DSMonth 2012 theme “Creativity + Great Health = Fierce Living Women.” To learn more about Nakita and her business, visit www.facebook.com/BrandingChicks. Follow her on Twitter: @brandingchicks.

Photo Credit: Nakita Pope

Photo Credit: Nakita Pope

Guest Blog Post by Nakita Pope, Founder of Branding Chicks

I love the Digital Sisterhood Month theme of Creativity + Great Health = Fierce Living Women. It’s something that resonates with me in a very real way, because I see the relationship between the two everyday in my life. In my heart I am an artist and creator, among other things. I’m blessed that part of my creative outlet IS my and people actually PAY me to do it! When I picked up my first box of crayons I never imagined that I would be able to do the thing that made my heart happy for the rest of my life. Although being creative is what I do for a living, no matter what you’re doing, you can bring creativity to it. But, you have to be healthy in order to have that metaphorical clean slate for creativity to show up.

There are so many aspects of your health. In my experience, being able to keep a sense of balance in my life is what creates the mental wellbeing that allows me to live, create, work, and love powerfully. As a soloprenuer, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with my endless list of things to do …. especially when I wear all of the hats.

However, creating and maintaining that balance is important and necessary for me. It’s what keeps me sane and when I feel most like myself. The biggest lesson I’ve learned is that I am the only one that can create that balance for myself. My mental health is not nearly as important to anyone else as it is to me, so I had to find ways to keep the joy in my work and my life. On those long lists of to-dos?….are also fun things. Yes. I make it an actual task that gets checked off on my list. Whether it’s a pedicure, a call to someone I love that I haven’t spoken to in a while, or to draw something just because I want to, it goes on the list! That way, I actually get to see the balance I’m creating for myself in a very tangible way daily.

When I neglect to do it, I notice the difference in how I deal with my clients, how inspired I am, and ultimately how FIERCE I am. Maybe my method won’t work for you, but I encourage you to look for ways to take care of yourself not only mentally, but physically. We as women have a tendency to take care of everyone but ourselves, but it’s that commitment to being powerfully whole that can allow you to have even more to give and more to create!

 

#DSMonth Guest Blog Post by Pen of The NetworkFAM


Happy Day 26 of #DigitalSisterhood Month! Happy #DigitalSisterhood Wednesday! Happy First Day of Kwanzaa – Umoja (Unity)!

Today, Digital Sisterhood Network is celebrating the voices of our community by sharing a guest blog post written by Pen, the co-founder of The NetworkFAM. Check out what Pen has to say about the #DSMonth 2012 theme “Creativity + Great Health = Fierce Living Women” and what it means to her and her business. To learn more about Pen and her business, visit www.thenetworkfam.com. Follow her on Twitter: @loudpen.

Guest Blog Post by Pen, Co-Founder of The NetworkFam

Photo by Cacha

Photo by Cacha

I first came across the Digital Sisterhood Network via Twitter during their weekly #DigitalSisterhood Wednesday celebration and was immediately intrigued. I was interested in learning more about The Digital Sisterhood Network because I live and breathe all things digital both personally and professionally, not to mention, I am all about networking with other digital savvy women. Recently, the fabulous founder of The Digital Sisterhood Network, Ananda Leeke invited me to write this post about what this month’s theme “Creativity + Great Health = Fierce Living Women” means to me and my business.

My company is called The NetworkFAM and it encompasses several different businesses that all work together to promote diversity in fashion, art, & music. Through Cacha` Management and Pen PR, we provide models, stylists, make-up artists, and designers with management, public relations, social media marketing, event and photo shoot production. Our publishing company, 158TH & BROADWAY produces our blogs de la Pen, Cacha`, and The Blogging PR Girl. 158TH & BROADWAY also includes our digital publication, Flavor Magazine NYC and our web series “The Chronicles of Cacha` and Pen”; both of those projects will be released in 2013.

“Creativity + Great Health = Fierce Living Women” is essentially an equation that gives one the recipe for success in life. In essence, this month’s Digital Sisterhood theme is a life lesson to me. As you can see, my business does many things because my business partner, Cacha` and I wanted a company that would allow us to be as creative, independent, and successful as possible.

We are all about being creative, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, and being fierce living women. Therefore, I feel that we embody this month’s Digital Sisterhood theme and it is a mantra that we also live by. As female entrepreneurs in the digital realm, we constantly have to be creative when approaching prospective clients, the media, or sponsors and partners. When we have to pitch to these various entities, each pitch has to be tailored and targeted to its audience or else the pitch will be ignored.

We also seek to stay healthy because if we are under the weather then we can’t work which leads to missed opportunities that are crucial to a start-up like ours. As far as being “fierce living women” Cacha` and I want to be more than just successful, we want to be icons. Therefore, we are always seeking to be innovative, informed, and on the pulse of “what’s next”. So be on the look out for The NetworkFAM because we believe that “Creativity + Great Health = Fierce Living Women!”

Happy Day 1 of Digital Sisterhood Month (#DSMonth) – Guest Blog by Martine Foreman


Happy Digital Sisterhood Month 2012 (#DSMonth)!

It’s the first day of Digital Sisterhood Network’s third annual celebration of women in social media and tech. This year, we are kicking off #DSMonth with a  guest blog written by Martine Foreman, the founder of JustDiva. Grab a cup of something delicious and read more about our digital sister, Martine! Be sure to leave a comment and follow Martine on Facebook and Twitter.

Photo Credit: Martine Foreman

“Creativity + Great Health = Fierce Living Women”

I’ve always been a firm believer in the need for women to put themselves first.  After all, what good can you really be to anyone else if you are falling apart? None, really.  I also know that when I am at my best – physically, mentally, emotionally – I am able to offer the world my best.  It’s a great feeling, because giving any less doesn’t just disappoint those rooting for me – it disappoints me.

I recently launched a lifestyle email publication, JustDiva.  JustDiva has become a part of who I am… a driving force in my life.  And, launching a venture like this during a pregnancy, while also managing a full-time job, a marriage, a toddler, and a mother with health issues, has been no easy feat.  Thankfully, I have made it my business to take care of my spirit and to put my well being first. That choice has allowed my creative juices to flow.  Oh, how I love to exercise my power to choose.

JustDiva, a digitally-centric editorial product designed to cater to the lifestyle of the Modern Black Woman, was created because, after scouring the market, we truly felt there was a need for it.  JustDiva aims to deliver our subscribers a short, but editorially engaging, email that highlights the very best products, services, and experiences we can find in travel, fashion, beauty, tech, food, and much more.  I am dedicated to creating a product that our subscribers trust and simply love, and the best way for me to do that is to create something that I love – something that all my sister friends love.

As a mom, a wife, an educator, a friend, a daughter, a sister, and now an entrepreneur, I am confident that striking a balance between these roles will put me in a position to give our subscribers the very best through JustDiva.  Stylish, independent, and socially-conscious is how we define our audience, and as one of the driving forces behind JustDiva I feel obligated to be all of these things, and more. If I put my health first, let my creativity shine, and live my life as fiercely as I possibly can, JustDiva will shine through me.  The definition of a diva is a strong woman who put herself first and makes no apologies for it.  A diva truly believes that she deserves the best that life has to offer.  We hope we can make all our divas out there proud.

About Martine Foreman:

Martine Foreman, a New York City native, is the editor and co-founder of JustDiva.  You can also visit her personal blog at www.candidbelle.com. Martine resides in Maryland with her son, daughter, husband, and crazy cats, Spazz and Pepper. For more information, visit her web site and social media sites below.

Digital Sisterhood Month’s Guest Blogger Series – Tara Joyce


Tara Joyce

 

Meet Tara Joyce

1) Write a six-word memoir to describe yourself.

My dreams grow, as I do.

2) Tell us about your blog.

My blog is Rise of the Innerpreneur and I began writing it in June of 2008. I write about topics that are on my mind as an Innerpreneur growing a values-driven business. Those things have included my growth, conscious business, mentorship, design, marketing, sustainability, culture, the web. I also use a pricing strategy called Pay-What-It’s-Worth Pricing and I write about that often too.

3) What is your definition of digital sisterhood?

Women cultivating friendships online and supporting each other and their work.

4) What is your favorite 2011 digital sisterhood moment or experience?

When Ananda interviewed my colleague, Christine Dionese and I on Digital Sisterhood Radio in May. I had been corresponding with Christine for a year via email and I got to hear her voice for the first time. You facilitated that and I am so thankful for it.

5) The 2011 theme of Digital Sisterhood Month is ‘Celebrate the 4 Fs of Women’s Health: Feelings, Food, Fitness & Fierce Living.” How have you lived fiercely in 2011?

I learned how to better honor myself and my feelings. And through this I changed behavior that was creating pain in my life.

6) How do you stay positive and maintain peace of mind?

I spend time with loving and supportive people. I eat well. I listen to my body.  And I have a practice that I enjoy each day — writing, yoga and meditation.

7) What are your favorite healthy foods?

I love foods that are clean and make my body feel good. I try to be conscious of where my food items come from and what’s in them.

8) How do you stay fit?

I take lots of walks with my dog, and I run around with him too, and I practice 10 minutes of yoga each day. I really enjoy being active so I do other random smatterings of sports, like hiking, swimming, bicycling, etc. I also love walking around my city, and watching the world go by.

9) How are you planning to live fiercely in 2012?

I see so much. I plan on devoting more time to my writing and to facing my resistance to finishing my first book.

10) Where can we find you online?

Web Site/Blog: www.elasticmind.ca

Twitter: http://twitter.com/ElasticMind

Facebook: www.facebook.com/ElasticMindCreates

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/tarajoyce

 

Digital Sisterhood Month’s Guest Blogger Series – Alinda Angerville


Alinda Angerville

Meet Alinda Angerville

1) Write a six-word memoir to describe yourself.

Loving Unconditionally, Learning daily, Living Fully

2) Tell us about your blog.

The idea of blogging was one that was born out of a strong urge to write that started when I was nine years old. A very avid reader and advanced for my age (Bullfinch’s Mythology was my favorite book at the age of 12); it was a natural progression to want to put down and write what I thought and felt. I started a diary at that age and have pretty much been journaling ever since.  My faith and my ability to express myself through writing has sustained me through personal tragedy – divorce, loss of a child and going back to college at the age of 44 and sustains me now as I am embarking  on a life that is “rebooted” and reshaped to embrace all the positivity that the future has in store.

When the Internet started to take off – I got involved in website design and development because my creative muse would not abide me having a cookie cutter site that looked like “everybody else’s”.  It was during that period of learning about website design and coding that I decided to start my own blog. The title “The Good Black Woman” was born out of what started as minor grumbling, but has blossomed into an ongoing discussion about black women and what a good one is, where you can find one etc.  The idea to have a blog that featured stories of interest from the perspective of ONE good black woman is the underlying motivation. My blog features articles on current events, health and lifestyle issues, tips and concerns, music, book reviews, politics and some women’s issues.

The blog has come a very long way from its early incarnation back in 2009. I look at it now and it’s almost not recognizable to what it was in comparison. Perusing through the posts of this year there are several that I would mark as favorites.  However one stands out more not only because of the topic but because of the accomplishment behind it.  I wrote a book review for the Pulitzer Prize winning book “The Warmth of Other Suns” by Isabel Wilkerson that appeared in the Claflin Panther – Claflin University newspaper.

The accomplishment for me was as significant as the article and the review itself.  It felt like I had come full circle and that the “desire” to write had finally met with the opportunities to write and be read.

The Warmth of Other Suns – Book Review

3) What is your definition of digital sisterhood?

For me digital sisterhood is an evolution of the intangible bonds that have seen women through the ages. When society and government would not give us our due or even hear us or count us as people, we were supported by and borne up by the bonds of sisterhood that sustained us and gave us strength and courage to persevere.  The concept of sisterhood I believe has evolved into where it is not confined to just real time face to face interactions and that the same bonds can be cultivated, shared and strengthened via the Internet through social media networks and platforms.

4) What is your favorite 2011 digital sisterhood moment or experience?

Finding out about Digital Sisterhood Network’s events and Twitter chats  brought me into contact with many talented sisters from all walks of life and from all over the globe.

5) The 2011 theme of Digital Sisterhood Month is ‘Celebrate the 4 Fs of Women’s Health: Feelings, Food, Fitness & Fierce Living.” How have you lived fiercely in 2011?

I have lived fiercely by maintaining a 4.0 GPA while working with a start-up IT consulting firm that is a Microsoft Partner providing website design and development services and managing several social media accounts which I am told is not bad for a non-traditional student.

6) How do you stay positive and maintain peace of mind?

My faith and my ability to express myself through writing has sustained me through personal tragedy – divorce, loss of a child and going back to college at the age of 44. It sustains me now as I am embarking on a life that is “rebooted” and reshaped to embrace all the positivity that the future has.

7) What are your favorite healthy foods?

Fruit smoothies, veggie burgers (chicken and regular burgers), freshly made juice

8) How do you stay fit?

I jog (usually) 3 times a week. On my off days I do Pilates and/or calisthenics. I walk every day.

9) How are you planning to live fiercely in 2012?

Expansion of services for  consulting firm including some hires and taking on some interns, finishing up the core courses for my degree, running in at least 2 5K races.

10) Where can we find you online?

Web Site/Blog:  http://beattitudez.com

Twitter: http://twitter.com/Blkphoenix66

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Beattitudes56

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/aangerville56

Digital Sisterhood Month’s Guest Blogger Series – Jenee Darden


Jenee Darden

Meet Jenee Darden

1. Write a six-word memoir to describe yourself.

Blessed, Writer, Journalist, Dreamer, Open, Fun

2. Tell us about your blog.

I started my blog CocoaFly.com when I began working as a freelance reporter three years ago.  Sometimes when I pitched stories about women, minorities or LGBT issues editors turned down my ideas. I knew these were really good story ideas, but that’s the downside to having a lack of diversity in newsrooms. My mom kept telling me to forget those editors and report my stories on my own website. At the time I posted my reaction to news stories on my website. Eventually, I decided to post my own stories and interviews on CocoaFly.com.

CocoaFly.com is a new flavor in news for women. I cover all sorts of stories. I’ve interviewed authors, singers, activists, everyday women and more.  It’s a fun and informative site.

My favorite post from 2011 is my “Saving Our Girls from Oakland Streets” series.  I covered a daylong workshop addressing child prostitution in Oakland.  Oakland has one of the highest rates of child sex trafficking in the country and many of the children on the streets are black and brown girls. I wrote various posts on the topic and learned a lot.

3. What is your definition of digital sisterhood?

Digital Sisterhood is empowering, inspiring and informing women through new media.  The great thing about the internet is that we’re not limited when it comes to being creative with websites, podcasts, apps, etc.

4. What is your favorite 2011 digital sisterhood moment or experience?

I felt the power of digital sisterhood this year when some quack psychologist wrote a blog post on Psychology Today’s website and tried to scientifically argue that black women are less attractive than other women. That blog and a call to protest Psychology Today hit my Facebook page in light speed. I spread the word to my Facebook followers, as did other bloggers, and emailed my friends, family and co-workers.  Women across the country sent emails to Psychology Today and their advertisers. The article was taken down within hours. That’s the power of media and women sticking together.

5. The 2011 theme of Digital Sisterhood Month is ‘Celebrate the 4 Fs of Women’s Health: Feelings, Food, Fitness & Fierce Living.” How have you lived fiercely in 2011?

For me, living fiercely involves a lot of travel, shopping, going to snazzy events and living out my journalism and writing passions. I had to alter that definition a bit this year. I was not fully employed much of 2011. I realize being out of work was a blessing in disguise because my grandfather was diagnosed with cancer and I helped with his care. Through it all, I kept my drive and my faith. It was not easy, but when life is weighing you down the only way to go is up.  I’m thankful that I’m now working and my grandfather is doing better. Watching someone fight for their life made me appreciate the human spirit. So in 2011 I lived fiercely by having faith and staying motivated. I also launched a podcast for my job called “Mental Health and Wellness Radio.” You can listen to it at http://peersnet.org/radio.  I work for a nonprofit that advocates for people who use mental health services called P.E.E.R.S.  I love interviewing people. Anytime my work is something I don’t mind getting out of bed to do and helps others, that’s also living fiercely.

6. How do you stay positive and maintain peace of mind?

Staying positive and maintaining peace of mind was extra important for me this year. I keep an empowerment/dream poster in my room that I made with cut outs of pictures and words from magazines. My photo is in the middle. When I feel discouraged I look at that board to refuel my drive.

I surround myself with positive people. I don’t hang with people who enjoy talking about others or always have something negative to say.  All of that “Look what she is wearing” or “What’s up with her hair?” is like kryptonite to me. Anyone who finds joy talking about people isn’t satisfied with their life.  When you’re really handling business, you don’t have time to criticize others. I want to be around people who uplift, not bring you down.

I maintain peace of mind through prayer and writing in my journal. I’ve been writing in my journal since I was seven and it has become vital in my life.  Reflecting on my life in my journal makes me feel better when I’m down and real happy when I write about the good things.  Prayer and meditation always brings me back to neutral when life gets hectic. Prayers of gratitude keep me grateful.

7. What are your favorite healthy foods?

My favorite healthy food is flax seed meal. It’s rich in Omega-3 and fiber. I sprinkle some in my oatmeal, grits and cereal. Greens are another healthy food I love. I’m talking collards, mustards, bok choy and Swiss chards. Instead of throwing ham hock in the pot, I chop up fresh garlic gloves and boil them with my greens. This is my mom’s recipe and it’s sooooo good.

8. How do you stay fit?

I’m not a treadmill kind of girl. To stay physically fit I prefer to walk or dance. I’ll use the treadmill when it’s cold outside or I’ll dance in my living room until I get sweaty. Right before typing this post I was dancing to a Carlos Santana concert on PBS. LOL  It’s fun and good exercise. I plan on doing yoga next year.

9. How are you planning to live fiercely in 2012?

I’m look forward to 2012. I plan on traveling, meeting new people and doing more public speaking. I want to exercise more. I will take my dancing out of the living room and into a class. Okay, I’ll still dance in my living room, but I want to try some Latin dance classes and learn Spanish. I will blog and podcast more on CocoaFly.com. It was too hard under the circumstances this year, but I will give Cocoa Fly more attention in 2012.  I’m excited because I have lot of ideas.

10. Where can we find you online?

Web Site/Blog: http://CocoaFly.com

Twitter: http://twitter.com/CocoaFly

Facebook: www.facebook.com/pages/Cocoa-Fly

Podcast: Mental Health and Wellness Radio – http://peersnet.org/radio

 

Digital Sisterhood Month’s Guest Blogger Series – Christy Little Jones


Christy Little Jones

Meet Christy Little Jones

1) Write a six-word memoir to describe yourself.

Life Lover, Happy Wife, and Mommy

2) Tell us about your blog.

I have been blogging for a year, but have recently expanded my brand. My blog is all about relationships. We focus on inspiring more intentional interactions creating Fierce Partnerships that support your divine purpose in every area of life and in every critical role…as wife, husband, mother, father and sister-friend. I blog about all things related to marriage, parenting and pursuing your purpose with passion.  It was hard to choose which blog was my favorite, but one of the blogs that I got the most feedback on was “Calling All Wives! Has SEX become a chore?” http://christylittlejones.com/2011/11/calling-all-wives-has-sex-become-a-chore/

3) What is your definition of digital sisterhood?

Digital Sisterhood is an online community of sister-friends who are committed to supporting, uplifting and encouraging one another while creating strong relationships.

4) What is your favorite 2011 digital sisterhood moment or experience?

My favorite digital sisterhood moment this year was the Digital Sisterhood Radio interview with Barbara Jones, CEO of One2One Network.

5) The 2011 theme of Digital Sisterhood Month is ‘Celebrate the 4 Fs of Women’s Health: Feelings, Food, Fitness & Fierce Living.” How have you lived fiercely in 2011?

I have hit the wonderful season of over 40! As a former people-pleaser, it’s amazing to…FINALLY experience confidence, courage and authenticity like never before. In 2011, I have confronted fear toe-to-toe and have gone12 rounds! This year, I have made the decision to put all of my chips in and fully pursue my passion and purpose. I am a compassionate woman who loves people. My heart is for all, women in particular, to know and understand how amazing they are and the power they possess. Despite a very full plate as a stay at home wife and mom to three young children (5, 6 and 8 years old), I re-branded and expanded my purpose. I recently, launched the RELATIONSHIP REVOLUTION, which is the national coaching and resource center educating people to stop merely existing and seize a life that is full of passion, purpose & significance. In accomplishing this, I teach, train and coach people on how to become more responsible for making decisions that influence something greater than them, ultimately leaving a legacy and changing the world.

6) How do you stay positive and maintain peace of mind?

I stay positive because I have a serious relationship with God. I pray daily and I have created a strategic inner circle of friends. They are my soldiers and I trust them with my life! They hold up my hands when I can’t anymore and help me fight in the battle of life. They pick me up, brush me off and send me back into the ring…always.  I am able to maintain my peace of mind because I truly believe that EVERYTHING happens for a reason. Knowing that I don’t have to be in control, I only have to be obedient, brings me peace.

7) What are your favorite healthy?

I was a raw food-ist for about 18 months several years ago. It was my favorite way of eating. My body felt amazing and my skin was never better. Unfortunately, my body started rejecting that way of eating and I had to make some changes. One of my favorite raw food blog sites is http://no-bonez.blogspot.com. Still my favorite healthy foods are fruit smoothies!

8) How do you stay fit?

I exercise 6 times a week. I love strength training with my personal trainer, Brent Locke who is amazing – http://brentlockefitness.com.  In addition, I have found this amazing fitness experience in Alexandria, VA called Kazaxe; it’s like Zumba on Steroids. http://azuka-bom.com/Azuka-Bom/Home.html.  Kazaxe means “Positive House of Vibes” in Portuguese.  Recently, I have incorporated more yoga and Pilates into my weekly routine. I love health and fitness so much, that I have a master’s degree in Health and Fitness Promotion from American University.

9) How are you planning to live fiercely in 2012?

In 2012, I plan to become an international speaker, a best selling author and the nation’s leading relationship expert, coaching people from all over the world to create Fierce Partnerships and live their lives with intention and intense integrity!

10) Where can we find you online?

Web Site: www.christylittlejones.com

Blog: www.christylittlejones.com/blog

Twitter: http://twitter.com/christyinspires

Facebook: www.facebook.com/pages/Christy-Little-Jones-LLC

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/christylittlejones