Falling in Love at the Right Time.

Thank you.

For the unwavering love, the support, kind words, and for your listening ears. When it comes to creating something on your own, you take a leap of faith with every decision you make. From what the name of it will be, and what it represents to you, your desired audience and who exactly you are talking to, and most importantly, the words you will say.

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For a long time, I struggled to answer all of those questions, and questioned why I wouldn’t make ground with my company.

When I started taking more time thinking of those things, and less on comparing my road to others, I started to see the changes.

The Conqueror Movement: a communications platform connecting Black millennials of the Carolinas, inspiring them to use their platforms to give back to their communities.

To be a conqueror means to overcome any and all obstacles standing in your way. I overcame many things to keep this going, but because the journey was never about me but on the people I could inspire with this, it wasn’t hard to keep moving with it, to allow it to still be a major part of my life.

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Last week, I got to see a 5-year vision come to life. This platform was created to see Black millennial creatives come together, connect with others from the same state and communities and really working together to create something positive, and I’ve begun to see just that.

My company (wow, still surreal to say) held our very first event last week in Charleston, SC entitled “Falling In Love With Your Passion”. This intimate networking mixer was something our team thought people could really benefit from. But we wanted people to gain more out of this, so we came up with the concept of talking relationship style. How can you maintain a relationship with your passion despite the obstacles you face and wanting to give up?

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Since the event, we’ve gotten lots of messages asking for more from us, and we are pleased to give it to you.

But before doing so, I wanted to take a moment to soak all of this in, and I encourage you to do the same every time you accomplish something new. Too often, when we finally reach a goal, we don’t take enough time to enjoy it, reflect on it, and really learn from it.

It took us 5 years to get to this point. I didn’t have a team for 4 years, and now, I have two amazing gentlemen (pictured in the first photo above) who have really supported me through this journey. I didn’t have a readership before, but now, there are many people, most of whom I don’t know, who are watching closely for what’s to come.

Great things truly take time, and I’m grateful for the amount of time that it’s taken to learn and grow. It’s takeoff time now.

– K

 

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Because Life Is: Putting one foot in front of the other

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How do you handle hard situations without losing yourself in your problems? It’s always hard when you have an idea of where you feel your life is going, where your steps are taking you, and thinking that you have control of it all. But, I learned very quickly that I do not.

I never quite knew how to answer that question. And with being so young, there’s a lot more that I will experience in life that I won’t know how to handle. But, I’m learning the hard way that it’s all about embracing the journey. Embracing the hard steps, and never giving up on myself before I show that I have something to prove.

This month alone has really tested the way I see myself and how much I feel I’m personally capable of.

Being a creative, an entrepreneur and a journalist sound like they aren’t interchangeable or could mesh well together, but they find their ways. I could flourish in all aspects, dive head first into my works and not have a problem doing so many things at once from sun up to sun down. I’ve always been involved with so much, and I always feel the need to act on every idea that comes into my head (However, I have quickly learned that is a recipe for disaster!). But when do you make time for what’s happening personally? To deal with the personal emotions that make their way into your everyday life?

That is something I hadn’t quite figured out, just went with the flow. There’s nothing wrong with not having a strict plan, but there is a problem with ignoring the very things your mind needs to take care of.

As business creatives, we tend to develop this machine like mentality that we can push off things, conversations and conflicts and channel any negative energy into our works.

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Looking at this month alone, I have lost way more than I gained from not being real with myself.

It’s so easy to get caught up in answering “I’m fine” to every “How are you?” question. But what happens when you’re not and more things continue to happen?

There was a moment I had this month where things just kept happening. And it was never really anything that people have done towards me themselves, but it was mostly the act of knowing what I deserve and making some hard decisions. But I thought saying “I’m fine” would just alleviate the need to deal with those things head on. But you only do yourself a disservice when you don’t.

The same effort and energy you put into making sure a plan is carried out and it works in your career is the same effort, time and energy you need to put into your personal life.

Show people around you how much you really care. Have those hard conversations if it’s on your mind and you know you can’t be your best self until those feelings are expressed. Be intentional about the growth you want to make and get real. Because at the end of the day, you have one life to live and you don’t want to go through life feeling stagnant and in the same place years from now.

There’s nothing wrong with needing to deal with the hard stuff.

And when it’s all said and done, make sure you continue your walk and put one foot right in front of the other.

 

Thank you + Hello again

I appreciate you.

I can’t even begin to say how grateful I am for the friends and loved ones I have who called or sent messages checking in on little ole me during Hurricane Matthew. It was greatly appreciated all the same.

I’m also grateful to be typing this up in my own apartment space where thankfully there have been no damages due to the storm, the power still works, and everything is exactly how I left it. If I learned nothing from this weekend’s 24 hour coverage of the storm, I’ve learned to count my blessings, no matter how big or small.

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The Live 5 news team did an amazing job coming together these past few days to bring our viewers any information we could to keep them safe. As a producer, this is very important to me. I value those who love us and what we do because only a smidget of it is actually seen on camera. A whole lot of the work comes from behind the scenes with decisions on who covers what, how that is presented to the viewers and for how long.

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I didn’t get many pictures of the newsroom over the weekend, but let me tell you: it was a whole lot of hustle and bustle! Many of us spent the night at Live 5’s headquarters so that we could all safely and with rest make sure that we were ready for the day’s events.

We stressed.

We laughed.

We fellowshipped.

We were all together in one space. Not everything goes well 100%, but our main goal is what the viewer needs from us, and we all came together to get it done.

While many may still be feeling the effects of Hurricane Matthew, I want to send lots of encouragement and light your way. Make it to all of your destinations safely, and remember that my team and I are always on your side, no matter where you are.

-K

P.S. I promise, I will blog often. Look out for personal notes and things on Mondays ❤

 

“I Am Change,” T-shirts available now.

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Cheers to stepping outside of comfort zones and really making things happen within the community.

For the past few years, I have always tried to figure out ways that I could expand the conversation of news media through my communications platform: The Conqueror Movement. Many moments have presented themselves, and we’ve addressed many issues that hit close to home, such as the common stereotypes of the African American male, the natural hair movement and how it’s perceived to other cultures, and now the constant discussion of identity and representation of African Americans in news media (their portrayl, stories that often don’t get discussed, stories that aren’t discussed enough, misconceptions, etc.).

Many have also expressed to me that the platform needs a shirt – and people would actually wear it.

But, I wanted to do something different.

I wanted to create a message – a message that people could identify with and be proud of.

So, I reached out to one of my good friends, Devin Green who is a phenomenal graphic designed and illustrator who owns his own clothing company, Style Clothing Co

He created this vision for me based on what I expressed above and the current campaign I was leading  “I Am Not My Skin”. Thus, “I am Change, I am not the Problem” was born.

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This design was inspired by the voices of many who always seem like they have to explain the importance of their existence because of something as simple as race or gender.

This message couldn’t be more relevant, especially now. By challenging this notion that color tells a lot about who a person is, or gender, we defy what many people begin to call “reality” when it is simply not.

I am hoping that this will not be the end all, be all for The Conqueror Movement, and that we will continue to bring forth many different initiatives and opportunities for conversations like this to occur. This won’t be the last you see of the movement this year, but this is the start of what supporting the initiative looks like. Without you, growth won’t be possible. Invest in the local game changers and change makers.

To support the initiative of the Conqueror Movement by purchasing a t-shirt, click here.

Love,

Khadijah Dennis

More Than A Kickback

“Have you ever been a part of something bigger than yourself?”

I’ve always heard this question being asked; in movies, in class rooms or casual conversation.

But Wednesday night, I actually had the opportunity to experience that feeling.

Earlier in the year, I had a sit down meeting with my good friend, DaQuan Blyther. We had worked with each other previously on his brainchild organization, Black and Consciousness Committee which raises awareness and expands consciousness about issues happening in the African American community.

He approached me about an idea. I assume because he knew that any idea he brought to me, I was sure to make sure that it happened. And indeed it did.

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More Than a Kickback would ideally be the space young adults could come to and network with artists and innovators, have a drink after work and turn up in the same space.

We communicated about this for weeks — a little over a month. And then, Wednesday happened.

Through spoken word that moved you, music that grooved you and maybe a few drinks that helped make the first two things easier, it was an unforgettable night.

I’m so grateful to have been a part of such an amazing experience. Something “larger than myself.” and I hope that there’s more to come of it all soon.

-K

For more information about Smooth Ent and the purpose of the organization, follow @smooth.ent on Instagram!