New Beginnings

I love the first day of every week, every month, every quarter and certainly every new year! It’s a time I associate with “New Beginnings.” A chance to hit the reset button, to start all over again, to get it right, whatever ‘it’ means for you. You can leave yesterday’s mistakes, troubles, issues, problems and yes even successes behind and focus on the future  – what you want it to look like, how you will get there, who you will take with you and what you will leave behind! Oddly enough this month, the theme of “New Beginnings” is resonating with me during the middle of a month, which is not my usual “routine”.

I honestly have no idea why I’m writing this or who it’s for – it could very well be just for me. As I reflect on the song linked above, I am reminded that every day presents a chance, an opportunity for new beginnings. We can change our path, our trajectory, the way we think, what we think about and sometimes even the outcome of most things in our life by making a simple decision to start all over again. The decision we make is that today will be a new beginning for me, for my family, for my community, for my work environment, for my relationships, for my church, for my sorority, or for whom/whatever I choose! As the song says, this is,

my future, my blessing, my promise, my reward

So yes, you can start all over again! No matter where you are, where you stopped, what direction you were going in, what you have been through, or whether you have completed the task or not! We can all chose to have a new beginning every day.

Here are a few quotes to inspire you to start your very own new beginning and to think about what a new beginning looks like and means for you. Quotes are courtesy of Iyanla Vanzant. Pick one that resonates with you the most today (tomorrow’s answer maybe different) and use that as an anchor for your new beginning. I highlighted a few in green that stood out for me.

  1. “When we start the day with a spirit of joy, openness, peace and love, we put the universe on alert, we want more of the same.”
  2. “No matter what is going on in your life today, remember, it is only preparation for better things.”
  3. “Do not allow yesterday’s garbage to influence your experience today. It is unnecessary to punish yourself for being human.”
  4. “Forgiveness fosters growth, learning, and healing.”
  5. “What you tell yourself about yourself, about your life, about your limitations, you will believe.”
  6. “Each day, focus your attention on what you want. Each day, take one step that will bring you closer to it.”
  7. “Your life is a reflection of what you believe. If you really believe something can stop you, it will.”
  8. “All things are possible! The key is to identify what you want, claim it for yourself, and believe that you are worthy to have it.”
  9. “Give of yourself, your knowledge and the information you have received, then prepare yourself for an outpouring of blessing.”
  10. “Just do what you do and do it well. Stop worrying about what other people are doing, or what they will say about what you are doing.”
  11. “Be aware of how you treat yourself, because you set the standard for others.”
  12. “You are powerful. Stand up in your power! Embrace your power! Serve the world by bringing your power into your life.”
  13. “You have a right to say no…Your ‘no’ muscle has to be built up to get to a place where you can say, ‘I don’t care if that’s what you want. I don’t want that. No.’ “
  14. “The process of life is ever guiding you, pushing you, preparing you for the next part of the process.”
  15. “You know how to make it through the ups and downs, the good times and the hard times. You have done it before. You will do it again!”

XoXo 💞 BriAlys

Get Started

Get Started. Do Something. Just Do It. Go! These are all things I heard multiple times this week: in church, at work, on blogs. Check out a few highlights from an article I read this morning discussing this very topic:

  • Many people spend their whole lives waiting to be ready. For us, ready often becomes more of an excuse than a prerequisite.

  • Figure out the Minimum Effective Dose (MED). It’s the smallest dose (of information, skills, knowledge) that will produce your desired outcome.

  • People who have achieved your goals can be catalysts to your learning. You can save time and learn from their mistakes. I say this all the time!

  • Improve your knowledge acquisition by asking “How?”, or “Can you give an example of that?” This will accelerate your learning and help with application.

  • Done is better than perfect!!!!

The concept of MED is fascinating. The author provides the following example, related to learning a new language: “A chinese scholar understands over 20,000 Chinese characters, but you only need to understand 1,000 [Chinese characters] to be literate. The most frequently used 200 characters will allow you to understand 40% of basic literature (enough to read signs, restaurant menus, and basic newspapers).”

For more information, check out the source for this article.

Ask Bri: Starting a Business

Ask Bri via Facebook: Can you walk me through the steps of getting a business licensed. Thanks in advance! (Texas)

Thanks for your question! Surprisingly, the process is fairly easy, but you must educate yourself before you begin the process to be sure you understand the legal and tax implications. Let’s assume you already have an idea for your business: one that is specific in purpose and has a target audience.

First, give considerable thought to your business name and get feedbackBegin with the end in mind: people will need to locate your business on the web and let’s be honest, no one wants to type victoriashairandnailshoponline.com. Think about what your website name will be and use this tool to see if the domain/website name you desire is available; but, do NOT purchase it (more on this later). If you come up with a great idea but still need more time, you can reserve the name with your Secretary of State but it’ll cost you a little.

Next, put your tax dollars and mouse to work. You need to get facts from a trusted source. Someone you already pay to work on your behalf. That trusted source is the Small Business Administration (SBA). Their website is packed with information, resources, guides, templates and more. Watch the video to get an introduction to the SBA, then spend 30 minutes taking this online course: Young Entrepreneurs An Essential guide to Starting Your Own Business. Module 2 covers six basic steps you must take: 1) Have a plan 2) Get assistance 3) Find a mentor, 4) Decide on a business model/structure 5) Finance your business 6) Register your business. The SBA has local offices all across the country. You can even locate a course in your area to see what courses and resources they offer.

Be sure you understand the options for business types! The graphic below provides a high level overview but always use the IRS’s designations, found here, as the ultimate authority. The LLC is a common option because of the personal protections, so start there and use process of elimination for the others. Know that if you decide on a LLC you must have the those letters in your business name (i.e. Bri ALys, LLC).

When you are ready to file, it must be done with your Secretary of State. (Texas, Georgia, Alabama, Ohio). Getting a business licensed is as simple as filling out a form and paying a fee. There are no other requirements and filing online is much quicker than snail mail. Fees vary by state but typically are only few hundred dollars or so. Once it is approved you’ll get a certificate in the mail and you’re ready to go!

Once you have your certificate in hand (and only then), establish an online presence. Few tips here:

  1. Create a single logo to use on Twitter/Facebook/Instagram to help get the word out about your product or service. Use Word, PowerPoint, or whatever tools are at your disposal and mock-up a design, something you like.

  2. There is no reason for you to create a website that you can’t manage and update yourself. You can create a FREE blog that looks just as good as any website and there are hundreds of design options, see TechCrunch. Bri Alys is also a BLOG! With most blogging platforms like WordPress, you can buy your own domain/website name, add email and pay a nominal fee to remove ads from your site. I like WordPress because they also have Mobile AppsTotal cost: <$100, a little time and creativity.

  3. Create your own hashtag (think #selfie) so that when you post or advertise on social media, your content is easily discoverable. We use #brialys. You can also use other common phrases that associate with the content of your post (i.e. #women #tech #business)

Keep your startup costs low and put in the work! Be mindful that 8 out of 10 small business fail. But that’s ok: learn from other’s mistakes ! Bri Alys is one of many ideas I’ve had over the years. And not to worry, whether your new business is made up of 1 or 100 employees, Congratulations! You’re now one of those small businesses politicians like to talk about helping (insert side eye).