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The season to ELEVATE!

During my years in business with Southern Suga by Mel and now with the Cake Decorating Studio, I’ve realized the following:

- If you try to do EVERYTHING everyone else is doing, it will stress you out to the point of giving up. Do you, do what you are good at and what you are able to do! The Jone’s are long gone. I’m doing me. Not trying to keep up with everyone else!

- It’s okay to say No, every customer isn’t your target customer and every audience isn’t your target audience. (Thanks Kalli from Social Pal Kal for helping me understand this to the core)

- Plan AHEAD- DO NOT WAIT TILL THE LAST MINUTE to get things together. You are bringing stress onto yourself!!! Make a plan And execute it.

- Self care is the BEST care. Set aside time for you physically, emotionally, and beyond. If you are not mentally and physically well, you won’t be able to do anything for anyone. Your body WILL shut down. I’m speaking from experience.

- KNOW YOUR WORTH. Again, KNOW YOUR WORTH and don’t ever allow anyone to tell you any different.

- Your PRICE is your PRICE. Stop allowing people to nickel and dime you. They don’t go into Target, Nike, Nordstroms, Saks, or Gucci asking them if this the lowest they will charge. Remember ever customer isn’t YOUR customer.

- Comparison is the thief of all joy and elevation. Focus on being better than YOU were yesterday. Everyone started from somewhere. Be proud of YOUR journey! You will be where you want to be before long. Work on building that solid foundation first.

- Educate yourself. Knowledge is something NO MAN can take from you! Read that again! EDUCATE so you can ELEVATE!

- Positive affirmations. Write them down on sticky notes, your mirror, at work, in your purse, wallet, anywhere! You are your greatest motivator. Set systems in place to keep you motivated and encouraged.

- Ok- so this one may be hard to take in BUT it’s a real GEM! YOUR FAMILY and even some Friends are NOT going to support you the way you expect. They are NOT your target audience so DON’T be gettting all in your feelings over it! Please understand this SOON on, otherwise you will be very bitter and angry. Some may support but not all and that’s OK y’all! There’s a world of strangers out there ready to support your business.

- Family and friend DISCOUNT! Ahhht ahhht- don’t you even think about tricking yourself into thinking that there is such a thing. Refer above to the YOUR PRICE IS YOUR PRICE note! You give discounts because YOU want to- because in your heart that’s what YOU want to do to bless someone; not because someone is your family, your homey, your colleague. Anyone truly supporting your business should not be looking for a hook up or hand out- they will support you 100%.

- Things will NEVER be perfect, so if your are waiting to start at the perfect time, release at the perfect moment and beyond- stop doing that to yourself. The PERFECT time may not come. Go with it! Believe in yourself and your vision.

- There is no such thing as BAD DAYS or months or years! We have bad moments, but do not allow that one bad moment to predict the outcome of your entire day, month, year or future. Figure out how to turn it around and keep it moving on a positive note!

- Learn from your mistakes. LEARN, problem solve, troubleshoot, brainstorm. Invest in yourself, your brand, your product. It takes some amount of money going out to make more money coming in.

- Surround yourself around atmospheres, people, business, levels that you attain to be at. Elevate yourself. I may not be there yet, but I will set myself in situations and settings to where I can learn and get to where I want to go and be.

- Stop rushing into things without knowing the foundations. Learn the business side. You will need the knowledge. - Have a plan and goals. - It’s not how much you make. It’s how much you save. You will need it to continually invest in things you need.

- Consult with a professional before you jump into something you are not familiar about. Taxes, licenses, permits, expenses. I know you might get excited because you want that storefront, but it’s worth educating yourself about. I thought I was prepared and still had lots of tears shed. Learn the process.

- Know that even if I don’t KNOW you I am wishing the very best on your dreams, goals, and business. You have what it takes, don’t doubt yourself. You are your greatest motivator. You are not your situation. Speak up, people will help you, but you have to ask. God bless you and push forward.

Love, Mel from Southern Suga by Mel Cake Decorating Studio

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