Let’s put the Love back in Valentine’s Day

Let’s put the Love back in Valentine’s Day

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Madonna Learning center

“Madonna Learning Center provides a nurturing faith-based educational and social environment that empowers children and young adults with special needs to reach their full potential while offering support to their families.

School services are for students ages 4-19 years, and consist of six ungraded classes or “groups.” Each group has at least two teachers (licensed teacher and teaching assistant) – with 6 to 12 students depending on age and the needs of the group:

Group 1 – Approximate ages between 4 – 7 years old;

Group 2 - Approximate ages between 7 - 10 years old;

Group 3 - Approximate ages between 10 - 12 years old;

Group 4 - Approximate ages between 12 - 14 years old;

Junior High - Approximate ages between 14 – 16 years old; and

Senior High - Approximate ages between 17 – 19 years old.

Our lower school incorporates reading, math, science and social studies. Specialized therapeutic services are offered in speech and language, Occupational Therapy, movement, art, music, and therapeutic physical education.

Empowering children & adults with disabilities

Let’s put the Love back in Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day at its core is a day to express love about someone or something, but thanks to social media and the commercialization of this holiday, it has become the most dreaded time of the year for so many people.

by Jennifer Hayes

Valentine’s Day at its core is a day to express love about someone or something, but thanks to social media and the commercialization of this holiday, it has become the most dreaded time of the year for so many people. So how do we redefine the universal day of love? With social media brainwashing us with their unrealistic concepts of love and loving, the task can seem daunting. Let’s break it down.

Parents:
Show your kid(s) the importance of self-love. Be their Valentine and try to shed the notion of Valentine’s Day being limited to romance. Have a day date with your kids and discuss their thoughts on love. What they think it means? How people show their love, etc. The goal is to understand your child’s point of view about love, attention and gifts in relation to what they see on television, YouTube and social media. Kids (and adults) are obsessed with social media attention. If they believe likes and follows signify popularity, their mood and personal values will be impacted by the options of strangers. Help your kid(s) understand what love really means.

Singles:
Do something that makes you feel good. This goes back to the importance of self-love and boosting your own confidence and esteem. Why not send yourself flowers, treat yourself to a set of lingerie or go to the spa? Your options are endless, and the best part is you are the only person you need to please.

“Lonely Heart’s Day” is a made-up concept designed to keep single men and women in a negative mindset. Contrary to social media trends, you are completely capable of being your own Valentine—and doing so doesn’t make you desperate or a fraud, it makes you smart. Self-love is more important than any romantic love.

Couples:
Expecting your significant other to perform a large act of love only sets you up for disappointment. Combat this stereotype by having an honest conversation with your partner about Valentine’s Day. If you want to do something special (comedy show, concert,etc.) take the initiative and buy the tickets. This is vital if you know your significant other isn’t great at gift giving. Take the pressure off the day entirely by communicating what you both would like to do, then compromise. Don’t fall for the fake reality social media shows you. Nothing is ever as it seems.

Dating:
Valentine’s Day is often the most fun for those who are just dating. Aside from some women expecting reality to match Hallmark movies, this day of love can be spent doing just about anything. There are tons of fun, low pressure activities and events happening throughout the city. Once again communication is the key; and always ask, don’t assume. There’s also nothing wrong with spending the day apart and meeting for dessert at the end of the night. Whatever your plans are, be flexible and have fun!

Memphis is a place like no other, so I encourage you to celebrate love in a way a unique as this city. Need some inspiration? I’ve got a few ideas for Valentine’s Day and the following weekend that you and your Valentine will love.

Put on your Dancing Shoes
There are plenty of places you and your sweetheart can get dizzy feet, but to spice things up on the day of love I recommend a night of sultry dance lessons at Blue Suede Ballroom. Salsa, Rumba and Tango classes are available at 5, 6 & 7pm, for only $35 per couple. Don’t worry about your skill level, this is a beginner’s class.

Day date at Go Ape
Avoid the awkward first date dinner and opt for adventure instead. At Go Ape, you’ll fly through forest canopies at Shelby Farms Park making memories and laughing the entire time. Have fun and enjoy each other’s company without the pressure of dressing to impress. First date jitters will be gone by the time you cross your first zip line.

Solve a Murder
Experience live music, comedy and delicious food while learning information that could help you solve a murder. Princeton James Productions’ Murder Mystery Dinner Theater Experience is an interactive event that is sure to challenge and entertain you and your Valentine. Everyone will go to dinner, why not solve a murder while you’re at it? Available February 14-17.

Mix and Mingle
For entrepreneurs looking to expand their network, head to the Epicenter for business and a quick bite. They’re celebrating their love of entrepreneurs on Valentine’s Day with coffee and pizza for all. If this sounds like an event you’d like to attend, bring your appetite and plenty of business cards.

Get a little Risqué
Sock It to Me Burlesque has their annual Valentine’s Day Show, Heartbreakers vs. Knockouts February 16, 9-3am. This is an encore of their original performance featuring burlesque, drag, belly dance, ballet, opera, aerial and comedy! Fair warning, Heartbreakers vs. Knockout is not for the faint of heart, so prepare for all night entertainment.

Dine your Valentine
If you are looking for a romantic evening. Sage, a soul food fusion restaurant, located off 94 S. Main has everyone in Memphis talking about Chef Elijah Townsend’s amazing food.

A few other ideas? The circus is in town from the 14-17 or catch the Grizzlies game. Whatever you and your loved one decided to do, have fun and stay safe and remember you are celebrating a day of love.

About

Jennifer J. Hayes has a varied educational background in Communications, Education, a Bachelor’s in History, and a Master’s in Clinical Psychology. She earned both of her degrees from the University of Houston. Her work of published articles can be found in WorldOfLongmire, RelevantMagazine, and Single Lifestyles Magazine.

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6 Things You Don’t Owe Your Boss

6 Things You Don’t Owe Your Boss

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More Than a Mortgage

We Believe experience isn’t expensive, it’s priceless

6 Things You Don’t Owe Your Boss

The typical workday is long enough as it is, and technology is making it even longer. When you do finally get home from a full day at the office, your mobile phone rings off the hook, and emails drop into your inbox from people who expect immediate responses.

by Dr. Travis Bradberry

While most people claim to disconnect as soon as they get home, recent research says otherwise. A study conducted by the American Psychological Association found that more than 50% of us check work email before and after work hours, throughout the weekend, and even when we’re sick. Even worse, 44% of us check work email while on vacation.

A Northern Illinois University study that came out this summer shows just how bad this level of connection really is. The study found that the expectation that people need to respond to emails during off-work hours produces a prolonged stress response, which the researchers named telepressure. Telepressure ensures that you are never able to relax and truly disengage from work. This prolonged state of stress is terrible for your health. Besides increasing your risk of heart disease, depression, and obesity, stress decreases your cognitive performance.

We need to establish boundaries between our personal and professional lives. When we don’t, our work, our health, and our personal lives suffer.

Responding to emails during off-work hours isn’t the only area in which you need to set boundaries. You need to make the critical distinction between what belongs to your employer and what belongs to you and you only. The items that follow are yours. If you don’t set boundaries around them and learn to say no to your boss, you’re giving away something with immeasurable value.

Your health. It’s difficult to know when to set boundaries around your health at work because the decline is so gradual. Allowing stress to build up, losing sleep, and sitting all day without exercising all add up. Before you know it, you’re rubbing your aching back with one hand and your zombie-like eyes with the other, and you’re looking down at your newly-acquired belly. The key here is to not let things sneak up on you, and the way you do that is by keeping a consistent routine. Think about what you need to do to keep yourself healthy (taking walks during lunch, not working weekends, taking your vacations as scheduled, etc.), make a plan, and stick to it no matter what. If you don’t, you’re allowing your work to overstep its bounds.

Your family. It’s easy to let your family suffer for your work. Many of us do this because we see our jobs as a means of maintaining our families. We have thoughts such as “I need to make more money so that my kids can go to college debt-free.” Though these thoughts are well-intentioned, they can burden your family with the biggest debt of all—a lack of quality time with you. When you’re on your deathbed, you won’t remember how much money you made for your spouse and kids. You’ll remember the memories you created with them.

Your sanity. While we all have our own levels of this to begin with, you don’t owe a shred of it to your employer. A job that takes even a small portion of your sanity is taking more than it’s entitled to. Your sanity is something that’s difficult for your boss to keep track of. You have to monitor it on your own and set good limits to keep yourself healthy. Often, it’s your life outside of work that keeps you sane. When you’ve already put in a good day’s (or week’s) work and your boss wants more, the most productive thing you can do is say no, then go and enjoy your friends and hobbies. This way, you return to work refreshed and de-stressed. You certainlycan work extra hours if you want to, but it’s important to be able to say no to your boss when you need time away from work.

Your identity. While your work is an important part of your identity, it’s dangerous to allow your work to become your whole identity. You know you’ve allowed this to go too far when you reflect on what’s important to you and work is all that (or most of what) comes to mind. Having an identity outside of work is about more than just having fun. It also helps you relieve stress, grow as a person, and avoid burnout.

Your contacts. While you do owe your employer your best effort, you certainly don’t owe him or her the contacts you’ve developed over the course of your career. Your contacts are a product of your hard work and effort, and while you might share them with your company, they belong to you.

Your integrity. Sacrificing your integrity causes you to experience massive amounts of stress. Once you realize that your actions and beliefs are no longer in alignment, it’s time to make it clear to your employer that you’re not willing to do things his or her way. If that’s a problem for your boss, it might be time to part ways.

Bringing It All Together
Success and fulfillment often depend upon your ability to set good boundaries. Once you can do this, everything else just falls into place.
What do you do to set good boundaries around your work? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below, as I learn just as much from you as you do from me.

About

Dr. Travis Bradberry is the award-winning co-author of the #1 bestselling book, Emotional Intelligence 2.0, and the cofounder of TalentSmart, the world’s leading provider of emotional intelligence tests and training, serving more than 75% of Fortune 500 companies. His bestselling books have been translated into 25 languages and are available in more than 150 countries.

Dr. Bradberry has written for, or been covered by,Newsweek, TIME, BusinessWeek, Fortune, Forbes, Fast Company, Inc., USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and The Harvard Business Review.

If you’d like to learn how to increase your emotional intelligence (EQ), consider taking the online Emotional Intelligence Appraisal® test that’s included with theEmotional Intelligence 2.0book. Your test results will pinpoint which of the book’s 66 emotional intelligence strategies will increase your EQ the most.

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Lessons From Chef Gary

Lessons From Chef Gary

Lessons from chef gary

Remembering gary williams

By JR Robinson

This article is brought to you by Krewe of DeJavu Check out their menu!

Bradley Whitford

“Infuse your life with action. Don’t wait for it to happen. Make it happen. Make your own future. Make your own hope. Make your own love. And whatever your beliefs, honor your creator, not by passively waiting for grace to come down from upon high, but by doing what you can to make grace happen yourself, right now, right down here on Earth.”

This was the Chef Gary I knew, he was a guy that never waited on God. He did the work, he gave the help, he shared a meal, he loved the Saints, he shared joy, he inspired others to act, and God followed up with blessings. Chef Gary would not want me to be writing this from a place of sadness. Instead he would want this written with the joy that was his life. So instead of writing a tribute to Chef Gary, I decided to just share with you some of what Gary taught me in our many conversations.

Joy is Always in Season

Chef Gary had struggles like we all do, but I never saw it. I knew they were there. He would share things about cash flow issues, taxes, and health. But it was never in a “woe is me” spirit. Gary always had that smile on his face that said, right now this is a season of Joy. If there was one take away that I want to carry fourth from knowing Chef Gary, this is on the top ten list. Joy is always the best choice, no matter what you are going through.

You can Always Give

Giving is one of those things that seemed like it was built into the DNA of Chef Gary. Even on his most difficult of days, his giving spirit was on display in some shape of form. Gary was cooking a meal for someone or donating to a cause. The word no when it came to giving was almost not there at all. I was had first hand experience seeing Chef Gary helping someone when I knew he could not afford to be giving on this day. But not having was never a reason for not giving. Chef Gary did not give to be seen giving, he gave because it was the right thing to do and he believed that God would help him to continue to give. So life could have been one of extravagant living for Chef Gary, but instead he lived a life of exceptional giving!

Start at Home

Gary was a big supporter of the African American Community. He personally hosted multiple events for the Heal the Hood Foundation. Over the years and over many lunches, Gary talked about the importance of the African American Community working together as a group instead of pulling each other down. This isn’t a thought that Gary just talked about, his everyday was devoted to lifting up others in his community and being a role model was important. The Gary view of being a role model was a sincere role of just living the best life you could and allowing that example to lift others. He did not wake up in the morning with an attitude of “I want people to look at me”. Instead he simply lived a life worth looking at.

Your Brothers & Sisters Come in all Colors

Gary‘s support of the African American Community did not come at the expense of any other community. There was not a racial divide with Chef Gary, Hayden Parsons a local white boxer and community supporter refers to Chef Gary as Uncle Gary. Why? Because Gary loved everyone, he wanted to help everyone and it did not matter your race, religion, or community standing. For the Chef, sharing a great meal with a smile, an exchange of ideas and a few belly laughs was an inherent right for all of us! We are all brothers and sisters. This is how he wanted everyone to see the world.

You have to Eat

One lesson Chef Gary shared was that you have to take care of yourself. He was always asking how Sky was doing? If you followed him on Facebook, you could see that he wanted to best for his grand kids and wanted to leave them with something great. He wanted me to do the same for Sky. He also wanted this for the families he served. Gary knew that I under charged for services. He knew that I let clients not pay at times if they were struggling. But he would say, Jerome you got to Eat. He was trying to tell me that if I didn’t take care of myself, I wouldn’t be able to take care of others. I think he was passionate about this with me because he had first-hand experience giving to others and helping others while putting his needs on the back burner. I haven’t completely learned this lesson yet, and I am not sure that Chef Gary ever did either.

Live a Life Worth Sharing

A friend of mine said something powerful at his grandfather‘s funeral. He said that the greatest lesson from his grandfather‘s life was that he died empty, because he accomplished everything he wanted, with no regrets. I think that, along with leaving a legacy, would be the greatest sign of success.

936 Florida Street Memphis, Tennessee 38106
Krewe Of DeJavu, and Executive Chef Gary WIlliams, bring you Culture of New Orleans. Stop by Memphis for Creole, Soulfood Vegetarian & Vegan.

HOURS

11-4 M-F
11-5 Saturday
CLOSED SUNDAY

Marvin Sapp

“It was 12:31 at night and something woke me up. I grabbed my phone like I always do and there was a message on Facebook from Kelly Price with a picture of Chef Gary. I didn’t know how to process it. I sat up and read it again. I thought, I am not reading this correctly. Once It was clear what was being said, I still thought there was something incorrect. But within minutes, I could see that this was not an error. Chef Gary Williams had died. This was a shock to my system. I talk to Gary all the time. I see him at all the big events helping the community. We had just interviewed him a couple weeks ago. But then I remembered this scripture from the bible.”

“Because time and unforeseen occurrence befall them all.”
Ecclesiastes 9:11.

Chef Gary‘s life was never going to be finished. There was never going to be a day where he was done helping others. Why? Because there was no end to the goodness and the willingness to help others. His heart just was not made with limits on love, giving, support, and joy. So death may have taken him, but his legacy will always be here. Chef Gary lived a life worth sharing. Take a look across Facebook and Instagram and you will see an out pouring of support from people who’s lives have been touched by this great man. In death, Chef Gary has reminded me to live a life worth sharing. We can’t see what will happen after we are gone. So live your greatness today!

Ecclesiastes 3: 20 – 23.

All are going to the same place. They all come from the dust, and they all are returning to the dust. 21 Who really knows whether the spirit of humans ascends upward, and whether the spirit of animals descends down to the earth? 22 And I saw that there is nothing better than for a man to find enjoyment in his work, because that is his reward; for who can enable him to see what will happen after he is gone?

A Message to His Family

The pain of your loss will not soon fade. The loss of Gary as a husband, a father, a grand father, and as a friend is a great loss. He leaves a void that simply can’t be filled. So I encourage you to embrace his example. Love life everyday, find your greatness and share it with the world, laugh everyday, smile everyday, cheer on the saints, see others for who they are capable of being and not as they appear today, give to others, love everyone, and most of all never forget all those special moments you shared with Gary. I want to leave one last thought with you. My mother died of Cancer, she hated that she could not do the things she once did. So I read this verse to her many times. It was a reminder that God never forgets the greatness of your works. Chef Gary was an amazing man who gave when he didn’t have it to give. That is the man that God remembers. I hope that is how you will remember him also!

Hebrews 6:10 King James Version:


For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have shewed toward his name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister.

S. Thornton

Always helping others, always ready to donate his time, always a friend to everyone! We will miss you next year at MMIM! One of a kind! #ChefGary

M. Elmore

Met him in the airport before he opened DeJaVu. New Orleans connected. Wonderful man. Shared what he had with others. He will be missed. #ChefGary

D. Thompson

Always smiling, such a wonderful man! #ChefGary

D. Bailey

Gonna miss that Positive Energy#ChefGary

E. Allen

You will be missed #ChefGary

justmy features

The Blues Foundation doing Amazing Things during IBC week!

This week at Club 152 on Beale Street there was a health fair. Wait, a health fair in a bar? Yes and that is because this was no ordinary health fair, it was a health fair being put on for Blues artists coming to town from around the world.

28th Annual New Year’s Day Prayer Breakfast

The Lowery’s host the 28th New Year’s Day Prayer Breakfast where elected officials came and spoke on continuing the push for equality in our city and some breaking news was shared from the podium.

Time to #BeAmazing

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We believe there is an amazing story just waiting to be told inside everyone.  Stories that inspire change, ideas, and action.  Some stories are painful, some are fun, and others are life changing.  BeAmazing and share your story today on JustMy!

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Who is The Neely Agency

Who is The Neely Agency

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Call to a schedule a facility walk-through: 901.725.7372

Our management team includes an amazing group of leaders with experience and dedication, trained to get you a maximum ROI while raising the bar in Quality Control.

who is
The neely agency?
By Sheri Neely and the #FunCrew
The Neely Agency
Sheri Neely is the founder and managing partner of an award-winning boutique integrated marketing firm The Neely Agency, LLC headquartered in Memphis, Tennessee. She has always been an entrepreneur by heart. It is in her blood. Her friends and family agree that she has a drive and a positive attitude that was special from a young age. Her father and her grandfather were entrepreneurs. As a senior in high school, she took the newly formed entrepreneurship class that was designed for students who lived in rural Lee County, Arkansas where she grew up.
By the end of the school year, she would receive the prize winnings for having the best business plan in her class which included a meeting with the Arkansas governor and a trip to Washington, D.C. for the Young Entrepreneurs Conference. She would go on to get her feet wet in launching a few side businesses with partners over the next several years. As a child, her mother and father would tell her that she could be anything that she wanted to be. But it wasn’t until she joined corporate America that she knew that she wanted to be a business leader in corporate America. She had a successful career working for Fortune 500 companies in advertising and marketing over a 15-year period. She attended college right after high school but decided to join the workforce and did not earn a degree right away. However, an encounter with a sexist, racist manager prompted her to leave corporate America and attend school full-time and earn her degree. With her husband’s support, she did just that.

While she was pursuing a degree in journalism with an emphasis in public relations at the University of Memphis, she decided that she wanted to pursue an education in law which would take her and her husband to Orange County, California. Not too long after attending law school, she discovered that law wasn’t her true calling. Bright-eyed, bushy-tailed and armed with her degree in public relations, she hit the pavement off looking for her dream job in one of the top PR markets in the world. She immediately humbled herself when she discovered that Los Angeles is also one of the most competitive PR markets in the world. She made it up in her mind that she would be willing to work in the mailroom for an opportunity to get her start in a PR firm in Los Angeles. She ended up in a position right under the Vice President of the firm.

Her corporate America marketing and advertising experience was looked upon favorably in the multi-million-dollar integrated marketing firm that was one of the largest African American firms in Los Angeles. She was hired to manage the day-to-day public relations, advertising and marketing of the largest and oldest account that the firm had. Her dad’s illness would bring her back to Memphis, Tennessee. After returning to Memphis, her dad passed away a year later. She feels one of the best decisions she ever made was to be by his side for his last year on earth while being back home in the South. Although, the decision was bittersweet.

She had to leave her adopted city of Los Angeles where she and her husband had developed a very substantial network, made new friends, was introduced to family, enjoyed attending celebrity events, and going to the beach almost weekly. She founded The Neely Agency, LLC in 2013 while her and her husband were between Los Angeles and Memphis and is thankful for the opportunity to have her husband Victor Neely whose background is in auditing and account management and her aunt Selma Brinson whose background is in tax management and accounting as partners.

What is your daily routine?
What is your daily routine? I wake up at 5:30 a.m. every morning and meditate for 15 minutes, I read the Bible and I pray. This usually takes about an hour and a half. This time is the most important part of my day. I may or may not go work out. I must do better in this area. That’s why it’s important for me to have my prayer and meditation time and eat healthy to make up for not working out sometimes. You must have a way to deal with stress. Meditation and prayer are my ways of dealing with stress. I check my emails, social media, and text messages early. Sometimes I may take an early morning conference call from home. But I typically eat breakfast which is my favorite meal of the day…which just so happens to be one of the most important meals of the day. A couple of my favorite foods to eat for breakfast are oatmeal with fruit, craisins or raisins, and nuts or “green eggs and sam” which are simply egg whites, salmon and spinach mixed together or as an omelet. One of the things that I love the most about being the CEO of a marketing firm is no two days are ever the same.

Running an integrated marketing firm that also has a casting division, there are multiple projects to manage. I enjoy pulling teams together to execute client projects, managing the projects and watching them come to fruition. As a consultant, I enjoy helping my clients see their dreams come to reality or help them work through marketing issues within their companies. My day consists of meetings, calls and emails with clients, partners, team members, vendors, and media. It also includes writing, editing, reviewing, and planning PR, marketing and advertising materials, messaging, and campaigns. After my work day is over and if there are no conference calls, evening meetings, client events or networking events that I must attend, I usually go home and cook one of the meals that was delivered from either Home Chef or Sun Basket (two of my favorite meal kit delivery services). I must admit that I am constantly checking my email on my iPhone or iPad throughout the day because as a CEO, your day never really ends.

What do you like the most about being the President/CEO of an Integrated Marketing Firm?
From a personal perspective, the most important thing to me is that I am my own boss. Family is very important to me. Friends are as well. I like being able to go on vacation whenever I want to… (for the most part…as long as I plan around mandatory client events.) I like being able to go and come as I please. From a business perspective, we typically work on projects that we enjoy. Overseeing the creation of positive messaging, campaigns conceptualized, developed, and executed for the world to see or hear has always made me smile. Although I have been doing this for years, it still makes me feel all warm and fuzzy on the inside. It is very rewarding to be a part of the process. Generating results for our clients are always enjoyable…the kind of results that make our clients grin from ear to ear. I also enjoy being able to select who I want as a client. I am a realist, and I understand that every client is not a match for our firm. Finally, being able to groom and mentor young people of color in an industry where people of color have been marginalized. Although there have been efforts made to improve diversity in the marketing and public relations industry, I think we still have a long way to go and I would like to help contribute to these efforts.
Does your firm have a specialty?
Due to the growing multicultural population, and due to the growth of underserved populations, the Neely Agency fills that gap in the industry by setting up highly skilled teams with the knowledge and expertise to create campaigns that are culturally-sensitive across all populations. The Neely Agency is an agency for the new multicultural America. We also saw a growing need for full service communications firms that can handle clients’ multiple needs for traditional marketing, digital marketing, advertising and public relations which fosters an environment for consistent messaging and content across all platforms. The Neely Agency customizes marketing and PR services for each client’s specific needs. There is no job too big for the Neely Agency as we source the specific talent and services to meet each need. The Neely Agency can even cast and secure talent for television, online, and print advertisement.
Why should a potential client choose your firm?
One of the many benefits of working with our team is personalization. The president and the creative/design team personally supervise all accounts. We personalize service needs based on the current situation, past challenges and future goals. We understand the value of a dollar and limited budgets. As a lean, flat company, we have a responsibility to stewardship of resources, which puts us in a position to provide great value to our clients. The Neely Agency service model allows us to create a team of the best of the best contractors who work for their reputation and not just for a paycheck. As a result, we can always provide services that are client-focused and results-driven.
What and who motivates and inspires you? Do you have a support system?
My favorite Scripture is “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” I really believe this with all my heart and have seen it throughout my life. So, God is my primary source of inspiration. My mother and father were my first source of inspiration and biggest support system. My siblings were my second. When I married my husband 18 years ago, he became a huge source of inspiration and motivation for me and he still is to this day. He has been a consistent support system for me.

My aunt Selma Brinson, who also runs a successful business, has been a huge inspiration, has always motivated me, and has always supported me from day one. I also have other close family and friends who are also part of my support system and who consistently motivates me. Mentors over the years have also been a source of inspiration. One that comes to mind is Ephraim Urevbu. He has been an awesome mentor for years, and still is. It would be remiss of me if I didn’t mention Kim Hunter and Keisha Brown. They gave me my first PR and marketing job and helped to develop me into the successful PR and marketing practitioner that I am today. I was inspired by them then and I am yet inspired by them today. But there are also other giants in the industry who are “mentors in my head” who I have admired from afar and have been inspired by such as the owner of The Britto Agency Marvett Britto and Cathy Hughes founder of Radio One who became the first African-American woman to head the publicly traded company. Of course, most African-American women are inspired by the likes of Michelle Obama and Oprah Winfrey and I am no exception.

How do you like having partners?
Even though I have partners, they allow me to manage the company as the marketing expert and business leader that they know I am. However, they are there when I need them. I don’t think that this firm would have grown consistently year after year if I didn’t have partners like them. They bring more than 50 years combined of invaluable knowledge, expertise and experience to the firm.
Any tips for others who may be trying to get into the industry or build their own business?
Identify a mentor or mentors who is/are successful in what you want to become. Also, identify mentor or mentors who are simply successful and can provide you feedback from a different perspective. Meet with him or her as often as possible, at least once or twice a month. Become a lifelong learner. Although, I earned my bachelor’s degree, I knew that I needed to learn how to run a successful business, so I went back to school and earned an Executive MBA from the University of Memphis. If you are not able to go back to school, take independent classes online or go to seminars or workshops.

Join professional organizations which also offer classes or workshops. I did not stop at getting my MBA. I also participated in The City of Memphis’ Propel Accelerator founded by StartCo which is a 12-week intense program for minority entrepreneurs and business owners. I also graduated from the Small Business Administration Emerging Leaders program that is hosted in Memphis and included the opportunity to meet with and learn from the top business coaches, bankers, and CPAs, and develop connections with others in the community. It also included nearly 100 hours of executive entrepreneurship classroom time focused on business development and expansion strategies. Also, network, network, network. Attend relevant events where you can potentially meet your next client, business partner, or team member. Organizations can be very good for networking.

I am a 2017 graduate of the Leadership Memphis Executive Program and although it took almost a year to get through the program, it was well worth it. I look back on all these programs and I am thrilled to have been a part of each one of them. I learned invaluable information and made lifelong connections in each one. I can go on about things that you should do, which I would probably have to write a book about it one day. But, the most important are to keep God first and family second; be a loyal friend; live a healthy lifestyle, don’t compromise your integrity; be positive; be confident; work hard; learn as much as you can; set goals; take risks; read daily; don’t give up; enjoy life; love people period; love yourself; don’t take yourself so seriously; and laugh or smile at yourself and with others as often as you can.

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The Blues Foundation doing Amazing Things during IBC week!

This week at Club 152 on Beale Street there was a health fair. Wait, a health fair in a bar? Yes and that is because this was no ordinary health fair, it was a health fair being put on for Blues artists coming to town from around the world.

28th Annual New Year’s Day Prayer Breakfast

The Lowery’s host the 28th New Year’s Day Prayer Breakfast where elected officials came and spoke on continuing the push for equality in our city and some breaking news was shared from the podium.

Time to #BeAmazing

Share Your Story Today!

We believe there is an amazing story just waiting to be told inside everyone.  Stories that inspire change, ideas, and action.  Some stories are painful, some are fun, and others are life changing.  BeAmazing and share your story today on JustMy!
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Keyaira’s Empress Empire

Keyaira’s Empress Empire

Keyaira’s

Empress Empire

By Keyaira Horne

This Article is brought to you by Absolute Moving Services. Click to request a quote!

Empress Empire

Keyaira, a Memphis, Tennessee, native and founder of Empress Empire. She has worked in business and sales since coming out of high school in 2012. She also spent some time serving in the military. Throughout the years of her service and skills she has acquired, she has learned how to work with a diverse background of people and magnify her skills as a sales person. Empress Empire was birthed out of her passion of always wanting to be an entrepreneur, but not having access to culturally tailored business plans, and mentors that could relate to her. During a few of her projects she recounts spending hours on top of days to complete tasks. She agrees that had she had the proper guidance she could have spent less time on those simple tasks and more time focusing on self-development as an entrepreneur.

She would not be where she is today without the help of her female mentors, coaches, business bestie, or aunts and grandmas who have contributed along the way. This is why it is so important for her to help other women and she says she always will! It’s a great feeling to be able to help other women just because it’s your purpose.

empress empire

To Inspire

We all hope to truly inspire others, and to help them put forth action to achieve their goals. We want to make sure that they continue to progress moving #onestepcloser to their dreams and they will … as long as they are willing to invest in themselves, toss out dead excuses, and put in the work. Putting in the work means having the discipline to sit down and focus on your goals with no distractions, it means execution.

With a team of serial entrepreneurs and focused business women, we can all come together and create a powerhouse of boss women with empires. We are here to change lives and help women walk in their passion with a community of go-getters!

We have been inspired and lead by some magnificent women. Not only do they get things done, but they also divide their time by putting on so many hats. Being a female entrepreneur is a true art and once you synergize with other women entrepreneurs you get what Empress Empire would call “powerhouse magic”! Here are five things that happen when female entrepreneurs come together.

The relationship between entrepreneurs and their contributions to the locals in the community grows. Its highly contagious when you have women giving, and helping to nurture the community. When women connect they add value and a variety of services to the locals and their businesses. They also contribute to helping the community by hosting several mediums of activities like, educational seminars, empowerment events, back to school drives, and feeding the needy to name a few.

Conclusion

Self-Empowerment is highly contagious amongst women. A group of women motivating, inspiring and actively helping each other can have a profound effect on other individuals. This dynamic energy overflows into the worlds of others. Imagine being in a room full of high-energy individuals; it would instantly eliminate negative behaviors. A great model of relationships to have is one where all parties are treated fairly and can benefit from the feel-good vibes they get when coming together.

Entrepreneur services are efficiently communicated and supported by the local government. The local government is full of resources. What better way to create success for your local community, but by doing business with the local government. You can add more credibility to your platform and increase your influence by participating with local government groups.

Charitable contributions will be at an all-time high. Whether its donating money, can good foods, having a coat drive, or simply spreading the word through the local communities the charity work will increase. Entrepreneurs understand the importance of giving and receiving. Giving and providing value to others is one of the most important duties of an entrepreneur.

Last but not least, have you heard of the phrase “teamwork makes the dreamwork”? It all starts with who you have on your team so choose wisely. Can they operate when you are not there? Working together as a team builds trust and confidence within your brand or product. Best of all you create an awesome comradery between each other that is sure to be long lasting.

Moving Shouldn't be Hard

Reasons Moving Sucks:

  • All the packing
  • All the stress
  • Stuff getting damaged
  • Trying to organize it all
  • Finding a good moving company

There are no limits to the services we provide for our clients. There is no such thing as ‘too heavy’ or ‘too far.’ No job is ‘too big’ or ‘too small.’ Time is taken to listen and understand your moving needs.  ABSOLUTE MOVING is a combination of top-notch customer service, integrity, efficiency, and dependability, with an unrivaled work ethic that equals the perfect formula — resulting in the customer satisfaction that has brought us to where we are today.

justmy features

The Blues Foundation doing Amazing Things during IBC week!

This week at Club 152 on Beale Street there was a health fair. Wait, a health fair in a bar? Yes and that is because this was no ordinary health fair, it was a health fair being put on for Blues artists coming to town from around the world.

28th Annual New Year’s Day Prayer Breakfast

The Lowery’s host the 28th New Year’s Day Prayer Breakfast where elected officials came and spoke on continuing the push for equality in our city and some breaking news was shared from the podium.

Time to #BeAmazing

Share Your Story Today!

We believe there is an amazing story just waiting to be told inside everyone.  Stories that inspire change, ideas, and action.  Some stories are painful, some are fun, and others are life changing.  BeAmazing and share your story today on JustMy!

Like and Share justmymemphis on Facebook Click Now!

Are you Chasing or Pursuing? A play on Words

Are you Chasing or Pursuing? A play on Words

Are you chasing or Pursuing?

A play on words

By Ellen “Butterflyy” Allen

This article is being brought to you by cityCURRENT, Get Involved & Power the GOOD!

Wait a minute chasing and pursuing have the same meaning, of course they do according to traditional definition , (Merman-Webster).
Many people today choose to say that they are chasing their dream, do you realize what chasing means? You are always behind something, is that really where we need to be, is that really where we want to be? If you change the words you change the meaning. I guess you can always say it’s a oxymoron if we look at it in a literal sense. Let’s explore from Butterflyy’s viewpoint.

Defining words that maybe similar has often times leaned towards personal interpretation. Individual lifestyle’s, personalities and opinions afford us the opportunity to esteem those words differently. We all have grind but how we hustle it makes it different, right,the word play could go on forever.

When I think of the “Chase” it puts me in a mind of a never ending journey. You are always on the go, never having time to really outline and critique your moves, at least not from a vantage point. I know, I know some of the most successful people have said they chased their dreams until it became reality. I however think the words we choose to define our journey can add or subtract from the likelihood of me attaining my measure, so I prefer the word “Pursue”.


Now that’s a word I embrace, Pursue, it is the reason I wake up each day with a list of fresh thoughts. Planning a realistic outline for the things I would like to achieve seems easier for me. I am a natural when it comes to encouraging others to pursue their dreams also. Exhaustion is not my friend or anyone’s friend for that matter an although I may seem opinionated I find it’s refreshing to plan your work and work your plan if you are looking for the best outcome.

Some say it’s generational the use of the word chase, I can agree with that also. There are many words that have surfaced in this modern age of tech savvy millennials and fast paced social media outlets where many use words interchangeably, it’s okay.

It’s not up for debate, I find it interesting however that many judge others by their use of words. Just the others day I was in chase of my grandsons as they ran over-winded in the park while I lacked sufficient wind to catch up to them. So maybe it is age an since I am getting older I guess I’ll stick to the word I am most familiar with, and that happens to be Pursue, not Chase.

If you have a voice and the matter contact me an I’ll be more than excited to here your take on running vs walking. Chasing or pursuing

cityCURRENT is a privately-funded catalyst for the Mid-South and Middle Tennessee. A team of more than 100 partner companies have come together to host FREE events, along with an array of positive-oriented media and philanthropic initiatives to enrich, engage and impact the community. Our mission is to #PowertheGOOD and we invite you to join with us.

justmy features

The Blues Foundation doing Amazing Things during IBC week!

This week at Club 152 on Beale Street there was a health fair. Wait, a health fair in a bar? Yes and that is because this was no ordinary health fair, it was a health fair being put on for Blues artists coming to town from around the world.

28th Annual New Year’s Day Prayer Breakfast

The Lowery’s host the 28th New Year’s Day Prayer Breakfast where elected officials came and spoke on continuing the push for equality in our city and some breaking news was shared from the podium.

Time to #BeAmazing

Share Your Story Today!

We believe there is an amazing story just waiting to be told inside everyone.  Stories that inspire change, ideas, and action.  Some stories are painful, some are fun, and others are life changing.  BeAmazing and share your story today on JustMy!

Like and Share justmymemphis on Facebook Click Now!