“When You’re Different”

I’ve always been curious about a lot of things. I read a lot of books and magazines. I ask questions. I like to find out information so I’m not blind to certain things.

When I decided to go back to college I was working at a place where it seems like it would be a good place to retire from. Well the workplace changed along with the economy. So I went back to college at a time when I could appreciate it more. So after about 2 years I graduated with a college degree. I know what I wanted to do I just had to find a way to accomplish it.

After reading books and literature on entrepreneurship, I knew that I wanted to have my own business. I purchased a franchise and it has taught me a lot. In some ways it almost feels like I still work for “the man” but now I can select what time of day I do that. Clothes 4 Cures is not a franchise and I have built this brand from the ground up. Chasing this dream made me different from some of the people who I worked with and hung out with.

Building Clothes 4 Cures makes me feel like I am doing good and making some type of contribution to the world. Sometimes when I look at the logo, or the pictures from the photo shoot, or the good comments from well wishers, I smile. I smile because I did it all on my own. Of course there was Dino, the photographer, that took great pictures. Rick, the SCORE rep, that told me “you can do this.” Justin, one of my best friends, that showed up after a great concert on a Saturday morning to brave the cold to give me his support and pose for pictures. And my kids, that think my t-shirt designs “are cool.

 

Clothes 4 Cures - The Fountain

Clothes 4 Cures - "Bad Romance" T-Shirt Design

 

I have some great people as part of my team. Even the ones that I did not mention (i.e., my Facebook friends, Shequita, and others.) They have helped me to make some decisions that I will look back on and remember. I always felt different working at one of the largest retail chains. I thought differently. I acted differently. I even dated differently. I knew that I wanted to know more about what life could offer me.

Being different from the norm can have its good times and bad. I’m just glad that I have taken a course that is off the beaten path to create one of my own. πŸ˜€

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“Why I Do What I Do?”

I worked in retail for over 10 years. After deciding to go back to college and get my degree, I met some great professors that encouraged me to think “outside the box.” I never really thought I could own my own business but being a student at the University of Phoenix taught me to think outside of just having a regular 9-5 job.

I have been a small franchise owner for over 3 years but I always wanted to have a chance to create a company from the ground up. After some personal issues that arose in my family’sΒ  life, I got the idea to start Clothes 4 Cures. Starting the company would allow me to live the dream of building a company with my own mission, goals, and success stories. It would also allow me to help out a cause that is important to me.

I departed from a job working as an Assistant Manager for a very well known paint store. No longer would I have the benefits, a regular paycheck, and a 401K. What I would have is the ability to see my kids grow up and I be an active parent in that. To be able to wake up and not have to do the morning rush to get toΒ  a job that I felt lost in. Or, go through all the highs and lows to make my company Clothes 4 Cures a reality.

"Bad Romance" - Clothes 4 Cures T-Shirt Design

"Bad Romance" - Clothes 4 Cures T-Shirt - The Wall

Of course there are some days that I do get scared and wonder, “What the hell did I do?” Then there is something to make me remember why I do what I do. My kids will say something that I would have missed if I had been at a regular job. Or someone gives me a compliment on how they like the idea of my company and my courage for starting it.

We all have different paths in life. Whichever path you take make sure it’s one that will allow you to know what you can become. Until next time…LIVE! πŸ™‚

“Hope Up Close”

September is a month of back-to-school, Labor Day, and the final days of summer. This weekend was memorable because I witnessed history by seeing Jay Z and Eminem in concert. The concert was awesome and it was a chance to see young and old, of all races and backgrounds, enjoying music. It was a chance to see two rap heavyweights share a stage and make history.

Being in that atmosphere made me realize how great it is to be able to put differences aside and enjoy a form of art that brings people together. Music has a tendency to go across lines that can divide people and bring messages of hope and inspiration. It sometimes makes a person a little more compassionate about something that they didn’t quite understand.

Clothes 4 Cures was created to help spread the awareness of HIV/AIDS. So many times after a person is diagnosed with the illness, they lose people who once were important to them. One of the goals of my company is to help spread the awareness of prevention and inform you of how you can volunteer time to be compassionate to a person in need. No matter what the situation, a person needs to know that someone cares.

I hope that you will support us in our efforts. Together, we can change a world.

"Bad Romance - Clothes 4 Cures"

"Bad Romance - The Beginning - Clothes 4 Cures"

“Do you BlogUpp?”

I was doing a Google search to find a submission search website for my blog. I found BlogUpp! The service is free to use and the system they have in place is very user-friendly.

My company is an online company and Social Media is the method I am using to advertise and market the company. BlogUpp gives you the opportunity to get readers for your blog as well as a way to create an email marketing list. All this on a “beer budget“…FREE!

I’m excited to start using the service. Clothes 4 Cures is important to me and I am very excited to expose the company to persons that will potentially offer their support. BlogUpp is an excellent way to achieve your marketing goals. πŸ™‚

“Whatever Happened To Dreams?”

The other day I was reading about how two college kids that decided to leave their regular day jobs to pursue their dreams. They wanted to do that before time ran out. They wanted to see if they could make their dreams come true.

So many times you talk to people and their life is just so day-to-day. They once were people with dreams, hopes, and a desire to be something more. Not to say that their life is so boring but they want to see and do all that life has to offer, on their terms. For some reason that dream got lost and before they knew it, the day-to-day has become the safe route.

I have had so many blessings in my life but I still have the desire to dream. At this stage in my life I want to know the outcome of a dream that I have and how I can make a greater contribution to the world. I know the risk that are involved but more important I will know the end result.

What’s your dream? πŸ™‚

“Can You Help Me Please?”

Ok, so I have decided to start my own t-shirt company. Clothes 4 Cures is an online t-shirt company that will donate a portion of all sales to the awareness of HIV/AIDS. I am so excited about what I can contribute to my community and the world. I feel good about my accomplishments so far and I am using my research and development skills to make my business a success. As with all good plans, a stumbling block has occurred.

I graduated from a program that has been getting a lot of press and positive feedback. Being a graduate of this program I am using all the resources that they have given to me, but one particular resource has fallen short in the game. No I will not mention the name of the resource because they still have time to fix the issue!

I have tried to contact the resource through the Internet online inquiry form but after a month of waiting, still no response. Then after my reunion for FastTrac on May 24, 2010, I stopped by their office at TechTown, and still no luck. Well by now I am frustrated that they have not even made an attempt to reach out to me. WOW…some resource!

If you review their brochure it states, “… is a grassroots advocate for small businesses working in partnership with local resources to strengthen companies. ….works hard throughout the state to uncover opportunities and build relationships with organizations providing the extra assistance that makes a real difference to entrepreneurs.” Those are great things to do but how quickly do you perform them?

Starting a business or being in business is scary enough. Reaching out for help and not getting any type of response can make a business owner nervous. With a lot of attention being focused on bringing back a thriving economy having a resource to go to makes that rode a little easy to travel.

Well, because I still have not heard from a rep, I decided to go to the SBA and SCORE for help. I put in a request for services through the online inquiry form and a SCORE rep called me back within 2 hours. I have an appointment next Wednesday to see the SCORE rep.