Transcript of Episode:
Welcome back to the podcast. I am Marvette. Um, and, I'm here to talk to you about my nemesis procrastination. I'm getting a little loopy y'all because, um, if you don't know, I batch record my podcast and I am on the last one for the month of September. It is the end of August and there's a lot of things happening today. It was announced that I have taken a new position at the University of Maryland College Park and the center of diversity and inclusion in higher education as a postdoc associate. Um, and that means I no longer work as the women's Resource Center director at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee. And so I've been dealing with that transition, um, and all the things in. So what tends to happen with me as I'm a work in progress y'all, like I know I had these podcasts episodes, but you know, I'm still going to work.
I'm not perfect. I just, I'm trying to share with you the things that I say to myself. Like when I'm doing these episodes, I'm really talking to myself. Um, and I'm bringing you along the, along for the ride because I hope that it will also be helpful for you, but please don't, I hope I never go up the impression that I got it all together cause I don't. Um, and what happens through large periods of transition or when things get really hectic sometimes and I haven't been doing the best job at managing myself thoughts and times and things is that I will go into the despair, a hole of procrastination on that, picking up the phone. I'm not talking to anyone. I also am not doing what I'm supposed to be doing. Right. Cause it's different if you're like taking the time out because you're trying to, excuse me.
You have a lot of things going on. Um, and no, my, my pattern is that I get overwhelmed, I stop communicating with people and I stop doing anything and it just, everything starts to build and build a to do list starts to build or start slowing even a to do list because I'm too overwhelmed to write one cause I'm just like, it's too much. There's too much happening. Um, and that's what happened a few weeks. Yeah, a few weeks. Couple of weeks ago was that I thought I was doing well. I thought I was on top of everything. I thought I was being organized and no, all of a sudden the tiredness caught up to me. Um, because mentally going through a whole thing, like I'm not only leaving my job, I'm leaving the state. I have to pack up, move across the country. I had to start this new job. I had to learn a new routine as a new set of people. This job is completely different than my last job. And so feeling like I'm in between worlds, saying bye to family and friends, there was a whole like fiasco thing with the moving situation in that I didn't know how that was going to happen if I was going to get my stuff to Maryland and plus life is happening and so the end of summer. You have birthdays, family events, all of these things.
so the tiredness and all the things caught up to me being overwhelmed. Try. And then if you know me, I'm always trying to do things. I'm always, I can't, I think that I could do all the things without paying attention to myself. And even if you talk to me, I'll be like, yeah, I put the time in there for me to be, and at the time in there for me to like fill myself back up. I'm still being honest with myself. It's thing, it's a thing. So, um, so then what happens is I just say F it and I don't do anything. I don't, I'm really not doing it on purpose. I'm really not. I'm doing it like I don't care about the other people. I get caught up in feeling like I had let everyone down and I had to let myself down and that I feel like that I have dug a hole so deep, but there is no way that I can recover and like no one's going to understand or forgive me and everyone's just mad at me and that I've ruined everything. Um, cause if you would've talked to me in the middle of it, uh, I was convinced that I ruined my business. It was over all my clients are going to fire me and go find someone else. Um,
that my family and friends were never gonna talk to me again. Cause messages. I mean at one point I think I had like 100 messages on my phone. I just, yeah, I just thought I ruined everything. And all of this was like a week. It's like being on this side of things and taking a step back. This may be an been a week in the past it would have been probably weeks, months even. But now by paying more attention and doing work, it's only about a week. Let's still, I feel the same way when I'm in the middle of it, that much more time has passed and much more damage has been done.
Um, and so if you can relate to any of what I'm saying, please, please, please keep listening. Um, so what do you do? Like what did I do? What do you do when you, um, had done this? Like you're in this, this deep, I don't know, spiral that you feel in your mind. Um, so here's some things that you may have to contend with is that one, making the decision. You're going to come back into life and that you're going to dig yourself.What are you going to get yourself out of this hole? Cause digging only goes back the other way anyway. You're making the decision that you're going to do something like you don't want to continue to do what you've been doing. You're going to stop and you're going to try to fix everything first. A decision needs to be made because that's first. And then second is being prepared for an accepting the shame spiral that may happen. Excuse me.
So you made a decision and I'm going to do this and then it's like shame hits you like, I'm so bad I shouldn't have did this. Why did I do this? Letting it happen. But now I believe in the height. Just let it happen. Let those thoughts happen. It's okay. Um, and just keep telling yourself like it's fine that you're thinking that you're not trying to stop them. Cause the more you try to stop them or prevent those type of thoughts, the more that, that they will persist in, the more it will happen. So just let it happen. Whatever you need to do, you need to write. I'm a journal Journaler I think it's a word and that I like to brain dump and write things down. And so that, that helps me to let those thoughts come through and let them happen. So first letting the shame spiral, just you can't get stuck there being stuck there with be trying to prevent it. So let it happen. Um, and then what you have to avoid though while you're doing this is buffering. So buffering would be like, um,
you're trying to, I try to avoid those feelings that come up along with shame and like, how did I let myself do this? Or why did I do this? Um, instead of, um, dealing with that and like what it feels cause it, it feels like, oh my God, this is a lot. Um, instead of, you may like watch, you may be in to watch like Netflix or TV. You may like me binge watch youtube. Or Maybe drink alcohol more than usual. Maybe you smoke some weed. I don't know what your thing is. Maybe you eat a lot. Um, maybe you're just like, I'm going to clean. I know those people, well now one day. Maybe like some of that will rub off on me. I don't know. But maybe you likes to clean a lot. Maybe you decide I'm going to declutter my whole closet by.
Maybe you feel like I'm going to read a hundred books. I don't know what your process is for avoiding your emotions, but that's what it is, is avoiding the bad feelings you're having, quote unquote. But I don't, that's a whole nother podcast, but like quote unquote bad feelings. And so to take some of the sting or the pressure off of that shame that you're allowing to happen, you do these other things, but be mindful of that. And even if you let yourself do it, just know, like as a time limit on this. So, um, I think I read somewhere that like Beyonce only gives herself 24 hours to feel sorry for herself. Maybe only give yourself 24 hours. But having a period of time where you're like, I'm a lead to shame happen. Um, and do this whole self pity thing. I'm a buffer in these ways.
I'm gonna just watch all the TV and drink the wine and the ice cream but I only get 24 hours to do this. I only get 24 hours to like feel sorry for myself and say it's too much and I'm overwhelmed, right? Then you have to for real get to work. So the first step isn't the end of like letting the shame happen by doing all these things. The second thing is, okay, now you have to get out of your own head. And where I said journaling and brain dumping was optional in the first stage is absolutely critical. In this second step, you have to write everything down on paper. I highly, highly, highly suggest you actually writing pen to paper, not typing because these are two different uh, feelings or processes in the mind. And I've seen way better results when people actually take pen to paper and write things down.
You want to write out everything in your head, everything that you feel like you need to do. You should be doing, you could be doing, we're not going to judge it. We're not going to think about how we're just going to get it all out of our head onto paper because things always seem more or bigger, harder, whatever in our brain. And they do actually look on paper. So you just write everything down. We're just gonna clean out the brain cause we can't think through, we can't be rational or think through a plan or whatever. We can't do everything in our head. And that's what we try to do is figure it out in our head before actually doing it. This is causing you or calling you to do it. So write everything down on a piece of paper, right? However that's best. And then you want to look at that list. Look at that list and you know, once you to identify, okay, what are the things that maybe you should have done, but the deadline has passed. Like there's no way to do it. Like you, you missed the boat completely mark. Those maybe use different colors. Um, but put an x by those. You put an x by the things that have passed.
Um, you want to circle the things that you can do. Like you can still do. There is still time to do them. Circle those and then put a check by the things that you could do them. But they all need to be done right now. But I mean, you could declutter your closet, but does it have to be done right now? It doesn't. So the X is things that you should do, but the deadline has passed for those, those ex you gonna put an x by that you're gonna. Um, make a note to yourself if like, if any of those, um, the requires a response. So there's difference between, say there was a conference, um, that you want to submit a proposal to, but the deadline has passed. Well that law has passed, you can't do it, but you don't need to follow up with anyone unless you made a commitment to partner with someone.
But like typically you don't need to like, write the professional association and be like, you know, I missed a deadline. I'm sorry. You don't need to do that. There's no need to talk to them, but maybe you were um, Okay, let's see, a friend needed a recommendation letter and you didn't write the recommendation letter by the time and the application has passed. Then you may want to follow up and email to your friends and be like, Hey, I didn't get to the letter. I apologize. You know, you might want to follow up in some way and we'll talk more about that in a minute. But you want to make note of those things that happened x by them. But you need to follow up the things that you circled and only you can do. I want you to go ahead and write a deadline by them.
Um, just so that you're aware of the bigger picture and then the things that you could do but don't have to do. We just want to put them all on the separate sheet by themselves anyway. We're going to put them separate because they're not the priority right now. You only want to focus on the things that that are the priority or should be the priority. Okay. And so once you're looking at the list of things, um, so on a new list, you want to write the things that you can do with its deadline and the things that you have missed the deadline on, but you need to follow up with someone either through email or a phone call. Okay? And that should be on the list by itself. Now, before you go ahead and tackle this list, right? Because those thoughts about the come back up, you need to talk to yourself and prepare for that.
Give your, allow yourself some grace, right? To be like, Yup, I did that. So I had to be like, Yep, I went a whole week and I didn't say anything to anybody. Yet. There's some things that I dropped the ball on and all of these things are happening and sometimes I can feel like we're giving ourselves like there's a line between making excuses and getting grace. You're human and you're doing the best that you can. Like, yes, I was moving. There's a lot happening. Um, yeah, I could have made better decisions. Yeah, I could have communicated more with people and there was a happening and all of those things are valid. Continue or recommit to taking the next step after you have made this list and then accept responsibility for the decisions or indecisions. Indecision is a word that you made or didn't make, right? Saying yup, I'm going to do this.
So you have the list of things that you can do. You're gonna talk to yourself and prepare and then you want to go reach out to people, to your people who know you, who love you, and have your best interest at heart. Where this is not the time to talk to the people who are lukewarm about us. This is not the time to talk to friendemies. This is not time to talk to the critical on or a family member of friend. This you don't talk to them, you not, not right now. You talk to the people who love you and support you who understand what's going on. Do you find those people? You talk to them who get what it's like uh, to go through the things that you're going through. Talk to them. You find them and then you go and you tell them what's going on.
You tell them like, Yep, I'm feeling a little bit overwhelmed. I dropped the ball. I didn't do anything for the past week, but I have a plan. I wrote out the things that I need to do and I really, really, it would really mean the world to me. If you can help me get myself from this situation and help keep me accountable and giving me some support, I'm going to share with you the list that I have and what I need to do by when. If you could just check in with me in a few days and see where I am, that will help me a lot. So the key is to find the people who are supportive, to be honest with them and telling them what's going on and then be very clear about how you want them to help you because people want to help you. They want to support you and love on you. But sometimes they don't know how. Sometimes I don't know how to help. And so if you could tell them exactly like call me or texting me in three days and ask me about this list of things I share with you. Oh, that's something very tangible that I can do is very clear what it is that you want to do, want me to do. And I know that you're like taking steps to help yourself.
Usually that will help people soften a little and like really understand, be open. Um, but if you go in and you're like, you know, like, Yup, I didn't do it. Oh well. And then they are upset because maybe you're supposed to do something where maybe they've been trying to get in contact with you and you didn't respond and you go in with that attitude. They're less likely to want to continue to show up for you in that way. But if you can accept responsibility and a part of accepting responsibility is allowing people to feel how they feel. People get to have whatever reaction they have. You don't get to say that they can't be mad or upset at you or you can't get mad at them for being mad at you because you didn't do something. You have to allow people to feel how they feel.
And it may come down to that. They choose not to. Um, they choose not to live no longer be in your life. And you have to accept that because that's part of accepting responsibility for the decisions you made. And I make an argument that then, and they don't need to be in your life in the first place, but you know, that's a whole other thing. I don't know what you did or didn't do, but part of being around your community and telling people and accepting responsibility as allowing them to feel how they feel without you feeling the need to feel better about that, let them, let them feel better. So yeah, the really, I mean, it's hard. Ghosting, procrastination. I understand. Trust me, I understand them. They're really, it comes down to really being honest with yourself. Allowing yourself to feel the feelings and allowing other people to feel the feelings.
Really sitting down and writing out the things that you need to do. Reaching out to people and being honest with them, setting deadlines and then taking it step by step through your list, taking it one thing at a time and finishing that. And you will find that if you just say, I'm committed to the next step, I'm committed to taking one step, that it becomes easier and easier and momentum builds and then you look up and you're like, oh, okay, I'm out of that. But it's really, it can be difficult getting started. It can feel like it's never, you know, you're never going to get out of it. You can feel like, um, you know, it's easy to be like, why did I do this and talk like it's easy to do all those things, but please, please, please just commit to saying I'm going to take the next step.
So I hope that was helpful. Um, and feel like, okay, I want to do all these things, but I don't have a community of people who can help me be accountable, who are gonna support. And then I really want to encourage you to sign up for Write Away. Um, you can go to my website at marvettelacy.com the link will be in the show notes. You can DM me on Instagram at @marvettelacy and say you're interested in signing up. But it's a weekly accountability group. We meet every Sunday and Wednesday for three hours each day. We come together to love on each other, to share what's going on in our lives for the week and to get shit done. We work, we, we work, rewrite whatever we need to do. Um, and we know that we are, uh, committed to one another, holding each other accountable and being supportive. It's a monthly membership. And so please come to the website and find out more about it. Um, that is all I have for, uh, today. I hope your September has treated you well. I hope you had a great summer and that your years off, your new school year's off to a great start, but I will be back with you next week until then. Do something and show yourself some love. Bye for now.
Today's episode I'm going to be talking about how bad do you want it. So I speak with a lot of folks, whether it's about um, finishing their dissertation or it's about they want to start a business cause then I'm starting my own business or any number of goals. Um, and, you know, it comes to a point where they say like, you know, I've been doing this, this, this, this and this and I've been putting all this work and time into it and I'm not seeing any results. And so, they may start or you may start to question yourself and say, is this even worth it? Maybe it's not for me. And ultimately what it comes down to is you answering a question. Do you want it bad enough?
There are so many people. Um, I've watched their careers in different arenas and it took them so long to get started. Like one of them or like just get the recognition that they deserve, I guess. Um, one of my like favorites is Jennifer Lopez, right? Alright, Let's see. First you see her on like In Living Color as Fly Girl. And I would say like her big break came as um, as Selena when she was, she was cast in place in Selena in the, um, in the movie. And she sung the songs or I don't, I don't know if they will let her sing. I can't remember. Anyway, but she did and that movie was huge. Right. And then from there she continued, she was in Anaconda. I feel like these movies were right around the same time and I think as Money Train. And then she just started going in her acting career and then she started to record music.
And while folks were like, okay, we see you as an actress, we don't necessarily see you as a singer. Like it's cute that you're doing these like little pop songs and you know, like can listen to it and the car. Love Don't Cost a Thing. Um, I'm blanking on other songs right now, but to get what I'm saying. And people like Jamie Fox and other people kept like making fun of her and saying she can't sing. Right. But she was still, I mean, she was still getting recognition for acting. She was getting recognition for her fashion. Um, we all remember the infamous Versace green dress. Um, but yeah, she was getting recognition in that way, but you would see in like interviews and stuff that she was like, you know, it really hurts my feelings that people would talk about me and I can't sing and I've been singing since blah, blah, blah.
And she's been making all of this traction doing all these different things. But I still feel like folks didn't see her as his like huge superstar that she actually was right. Because while she wasn't getting like all of the , I mean, even Mariah I carry right throwing shade of, I don't know her, um, like all these folks, but like her career has lasted for 20 plus years and not only lasted, we're not talking about like she's barely hanging in there. Susan has been making money, money. I mean movie after movie roles have gotten more, um, complex. Even she, I mean she still does a little romantic comedies and stuff, but she also does more like, like for real acting roles. I mean she stays in a movie. Um, and she stayed recording and can sell. I mean she just wrapped up her us leg of her tour for her 50th birthday.
I mean she's 50, she looks 20, um, right and sold out all over. Alright. Whatever she does is successful. And um, I think about her often cause I feel like you just may seem like a tangent now, but I think about Jennifer Lopez often when I get stuck in my own head and I'm like, oh, this isn't happening fast enough, it doesn't matter all this work that I'm doing, it is not making a difference. And I just think about like she's been out here grinding for years and years and` years and success is not going to always look like the way we think it's supposed to look like. Right. And you have to ask yourself, are you, are you, do you want things to look a certain way because, because you want other people to think something. You want other people's admiration. Are you doing it for your ego?
Right? Um, people been talking about like vanity metrics. Are you doing it for the likes of the followers? Right? Are you doing it for those things or are you doing it because it's just something like as a goal you actually want to achieve. You want the result that you're after and it comes to a place of which one do you want most more? Um, being honest with yourself about that. And then, two, really accepting what it looks like to really have the thing that you're working towards. Like really looking at other people who are doing the things that you want to do, who have accomplished the thing that you are going after. Like what did that look like when they accomplished it? Now? What their life looks like now, but what did it look like when they finished? So, um, for most of you listening, we are talking about finishing your dissertation and I want you to even think about your chair or someone you admire in the field, right?
You may see them on Twitter or you may have a conversation with them or you may see them at conferences or what that and it just looks so, I mean, it looks like they livin' their life, right? They get it. And every time you look up they're getting this award or not award and, or they're announcing this or they're publishing this and that and they have this book coming out. It may look like that now, but I mean, scroll back on your timeline, scroll, scroll, Scroll to the time that they defended and if that, if they were still posting when they were as a doctoral student, if there's anything that you can find, or even if you can talk with them about when they finished their dissertation, when they graduated, ask them who that person was. What did that person look like? What thoughts or feelings of frustration did that person have?
Right? How much were they publishing then? How do they feel about their abilities? Then what are people saying about them then? Because you keep trying to compare yourself to someone who is two, three, 10 20 years ahead of you. You're comparing yourself now to that person who they've worked up to be instead of preparing yourself to who they were at the same moment that you are. And I can sit here and say, no, you shouldn't compare yourself to any one else. And, that's what we do as humans. And so if we're going to do that, I just wanted you to get the message of don't do it to who they are now or who they pretend or present to be on social media. Look at who they were at the same level that you are. Okay. Um, so that was complete. I just didn't want it to share that cause I, that wasn't even in my notes without j lo, but I do every time I look at her career, I've been watching her youtube channel and I'm just like, that's so amazing.
And to finally get to a place where you don't even care that folks can't see it. When you have outlasted them, you have outwork them, you have have outperformed them, you make way more money and it's not about that. I just, I think that's very interesting though. Like most of the people who talked about her are not even, they're not even, no one even knows what they are anymore. But for my own story, um, I have two. One is when, um, which is episode 19, which, so I won't go into much detail about it in this episode, but I definitely say check out episode 19 where I talked about my first semester and failing my first semester and going to talk with one of the professors there and how he, I felt like at the time completely just, I dunno, crushed my whole world, pretty much told me, you don't need to belong there and he didn't understand.
Um, and how I was ready to quit. How I was ready to go, like find another job and think like this, this phd program was not for me. I'd definitely want you to listen to that episode to hear what I've learned from this situation and how I had to, I asked myself, do I want it bad enough and how I had to get over myself and continue to go after completing the goal of getting my phd. The second situation that I think a lot about is, um, when I was getting into even like realizing that I could have my own business, right. This was years and years ago of I saw this other woman online and she had, she was doing so many things and she was documenting her process of like quitting her job and traveling the country and what would it be like to live out of a suitcase?
Right? She wasn't even thinking about starting a business, but then that morphed into a business because other women started to ask her like, how did you do it? Um, and at one point she had offered free videos. Like, I mean, not videos free calls she said that she was gonna give 10 free calls to women. Um, and that she wanted to talk to them. That it would be completely free and just to help and not to sell them anything, which sounded it was a lie, but that's not the point. Anyway. So I, I, I signed up cause I was like, I'm going to do it. I'm going to be brave. I'm going to take a step and I'm going to sign up for this call. No, I don't know what I'm supposed to talk about. But I mean, she's been talking about helping other women.
So of course she would have all the answers right. And I'm just going to take this step of calling her. And so we got on a call and she was like, well, what can I help you with? And I dunno, I was stuck. I was like, I don't know. I don't know. I don't even know what I'm supposed to ask. I don't even know what it means to start your own business. I just see other people doing it and I just want that. Um, and she was like, well, I'm looking at your website and you know, you don't post you, you're not, there's no, this maybe you posted. Um, like three things at the time I was doing youtube videos about random things. I can't even remember. I can't tell you. Um, and she was just like, I don't even, there's nothing I can even do to help you.
You're not, I dunno, I just remember leaving the phone call feeling dejected. Is that a word? Feeling like how dare she I've been working really hard. She doesn't know how much it took me to even get on a phone call with her. She doesn't even understand how much it took me and how scared and how much thought it had to even make those youtube videos. She didn't even give me any um, props or like Kudos for even showing up. She just, I just was pissed and I remember thinking like, I'm going to prove her wrong. She told me I wasn't going to be successful. I can even tell you she actually said that or not. But this was so long ago that I don't remember. But I just remember having this attitude of like, I'm going to prove her wrong because she doesn't know what she's talking about.
I'm going to get it together. And I was all motivated and I wrote out all of these plans about how that's going to have this awesome business and how, you know, wisdom would be like, how, how can you know what to do now but you didn't know what to do before the phone call? But you know, motivation is a whole different thing when you like when you're determined as a whole different thing. But I was, and I wrote all this thing, these things out and I did some stuff. And a whole year went by and I was still in the same place that I was when I first scheduled that call and it came back around that she was offering the calls again and I had to sit down and be real myself. How bad do you want this business? You say you want so bad and maybe you can relate to that.
Maybe you're sitting there with your dissertation, maybe you started your own business and , you're just like, I'm in a place, I'm stuck. I don't even know. I'm overwhelmed. I, I, I don't know what to do. And you, you're thinking that you should quit or give up or you know, throw in the towel. And that's what I want to talk about today of like what happens when you're at this point and how to get out of this point, especially when you're, you know, especially like thinking about dissertations and stuff like that. Cause you've come too far to only come this far. I know you've seen that across the internet and I don't even know who originally said that. You know, Internet quotes goes, it's hard to find the original source, but either way. Um, so the first thing I would say in terms of what you have to become aware of, because in order to solve a problem, you have to know what the problem or problems are.
And so I want to talk about that. So the first thing is becoming aware of your ego and checking your ego. Um, I use this quote, I say this quote a lot from Eric Thomas to hip hop preacher himself is that you owe you an explanation. I'll say that again. You owe you an explanation. So like me going back. So that story about the business coach or even about that professor, I kept saying like, they didn't do this. They sent me up. I'm like, you know, they didn't do this. It wasn't supportive. They should have did x, y, z. Instead I should have been like, what did I not do? How did I not show up? What did I not say? I had to answer to myself. Because you can't control other people. You can only control yourself. And so you have to look at you and say, what did you not do that caused this result that you're at right now?
So you're feeling stuck and overwhelmed. What did you not do? And not in a "woe is me" or a shame spiral. It's more about being real with yourself and being honest and saying, man, I could have showed up. I didn't show up in right. Like I said, I was going into, um, those times that I schedule it. Um, I didn't post on Instagram. Like I said I was going to do for my business. I didn't read those articles that I got, um, from so-and. So I blew off my accountability partner and I didn't write, I didn't show up to my coaching call that I signed up. Like what did you not do? Like being a really real about that. Right? And checking your ego. Um, the second thing that like that would help you become more aware of your problem is really thinking about what results have you been producing.
I honestly believe like you probably like you've put, been putting in time and you've been putting in energy and you've been doing all of the things in your life. But my results are not showing up, I believe because I did it like you know my story, I talked about it in last week's episode about how I was spending all of these hours and hours. Like I did that for my dissertation and I did that for my business. And both of those things came to a point where I had to be like, okay, we cannot keep putting in all of these hours without having anything to show for it. So let's be really clear about what was results are we trying to produce. Right? So it's not just a matter of I'm going to show up to this writing group and I'm just gonna write, I'm gonna work on my dissertation. But like exactly what is it that you're going to work on?
Like are you going to work on your - Like you're going to have a completed problem statement or you're going to have a completed outline for chapter two. Are you going to write an edit your chapter, the re like are you going to really think about which methodology is going to be best? Like how by the end of that time that you're working, what will you tangibly have by the end of that time? That's how you need to be focusing your to do lists and how you need to be thinking about structuring your time. Because it's not enough to sit there and say I'm working on it cause you'll be doing all of these things. Oh let me write this. Oh let me read this. Oh let me go check this email. Oh let me go check this post. That's you spinning your wheels without actually doing anything.
So switching your mindset from a to do list who are results lists, like what will you half do, you know, etc. And then the third challenge, which is probably part of the problem, is doing it alone. We as humans are not meant to be alone, but you probably think it's better if you do things alone. You probably think like, nobody's here to help me anyway. Right? Going back to my stories, like no one's gonna help me. Um, or you don't have something that you believe in that's bigger than yourself. You have to believe in something bigger because that's going to come to a point where you get really clear on what you want to do, what you need to do, and you start getting some results. But then you start looking at who you are right now or where you are right now in way where you're trying to go or who you're trying to become. And you're going to be like, man, I don't, I don't know if this is going to work.
I don't know. And then you're going to have to believe in something that says, I don't think I can do it, but with the faith of whatever, whomever, I'm going to get there. You have to believe. And that's something, something for Scott, whatever is helping you to get to that point. So being aware of your ego, getting results, focused and finding something bigger and giving yourself something to believe in is really going to help you understand really where you are, the problems you're having and the challenges. But I want to take it, um, a step further and really talk about like what it means to, um, figure out if you want to bet enough and how to get there. So, you know, um, if you've been around any length of time I have the get it done framework is three steps, three areas where you focus on that I use with my clients that I use on myself, not just with writing dissertation but like all areas of life.
Um, that I say I asked myself whenever I'm out of alignment or, um, uh, I'm stuck on something. What are these, what is three areas looking like and am I, is there something I'm not paying attention to? So the first one being mindset. Remember I talked about your ego and like getting really putting that in check you you ha like yes, that's important. The first step is getting real about what did you not do? What is the explanation you owe yourself? But then the tangible thing that I do every day is I need a mechanism to become aware of my thoughts because I believe that your thoughts control your, your emotions control your actions, what you actually, what you do every day. And those behaviors and actions that you take everyday create the results in your life. So before when I said how do you get results focused, when you figure out this is where I want to go, then you have to come back, takes a few steps back and be like, who do I have to be in a, who do I, how do I have to think in order to get those results in my life?
Where does my mindset have to be? So every day to get there because just can seem like, well that's a big thing you said tangible. So everyday what I do is I do a brain dump. I just write for like five minutes. I just write down all the thoughts that are coming to my mind, comes to my mind. And I used to then call the model, which was by Brooke Castillo from the life coach school. If you're a client, you should be using your daily pages to help you through this process. But I pick a thought and I look at that thought and I said, when I see this thought or I say this thought to myself, how does that make me feel? And this feeling when I feel this way, what do I do as a result of feeling this way? Then those are my actions.
And so the actions that I take, what is that given me in my life? So, um, an example would be say, I think I can't do this. That's my thought. I can't do this. My emotion that I would feel from saying I can't do this. It's defeated. I feel defeated because I can't do this. And because I felt defeated, I may then do my actions would be like, well, um, I may, uh, not show up to my writing group. I may not read anything because I can't do this. I feel defeated. Right? I may not show up to the writing group and then because I didn't show it to my writing group means I didn't do, I didn't make any progress on my dissertation. That's the result I have. So lack of progress can relay all the way back up to the thought of, I can't do this.
So I, that's, that's really quick and dirty. We could talk more about that. Um, we talk more about that. Um, when I'm with clients and whatnot, we talk a lot about mindset. When you work with me, that is mainly what we're working on is mindset because you can only go as far as your mindset will allow you to, and that may seem like a lot in life. I don't need to do that. Just tell me what I need to do. I could tell you exactly what you need to do, but you want to do it. You know exactly what to do right now, but you're not doing it. And the reason why you're not doing it is because of your mind. You're not managing your mind well enough.
I have given people exact detailed outlines for their dissertations. I had told them like exactly what to do when they sit down. I have walked them through step by step, sitting in a chair, open your laptop, pull out a document, put this sentence there, do this. Like I've given them that and they still can't do it. Why? Because of their mindset. And if you don't have, if you're not having something, a way to work through that, all the doubts and stuff that come in, you won't get to your goals. You won't. So I'll get off of that. So that's the first thing is mindset. The second part of the get it done framework is systems. So what are your systems? Any a clear plan. So what are you trying to do? I didn't trying to finish my dissertation proposal. When are you trying to finish it by?
I don't know. November 30th great. What's going to be your schedule to get you there? When are you going to write or, or, um, do dissertation things? Do you have a clear schedule? I always suggest that my clients have 10 to 15 hours a week. No more than a four hours in one day that you're working and that you do something, you break up things in small chunks because you do not need to be working. If you're doing something more than 10 to 15 hours a week, you are wasting your time. You're most likely procrastinating. You're most likely doing everything else, but what you're supposed to do, you're not focused. Yes. Yeah. You're not doing things for yourself to fill yourself back up. And I'm, I'm willing to bet that some you feel awful. You look awful now like in the weight per se, that you just look probably look real tired cause you feel tired and so get on a really clear schedule that you actually are here too.
And then have a clear routine, a routine that when you sit down to work on your dissertation or Your Business or whatever, that you know you do the same steps. Like when I sit down to work on like this podcast for instance, I know I need my laptop out and my laptop, I put my microphone into my laptop, I have a piece of paper, I write out, this is what the script is going to be in the script has a formula like up a story. I'll tell you where you may get stuck in and I'll tell you what to do and then I have something I want you to do as a result of the episode and I change it up a little bit, but I know that those are steps that I can follow to getting going. What are the steps that you follow no matter what?
When you're sitting down to write or you're sitting down to do whatever your goal is? Yeah. Do you open up your laptop? Open up a document? Because what I tell my clients is open tab, open up a new document, set the timer on the phone for 10 minutes, brain dump everything that you have, no matter if it's related to the dissertation or not. Take a five minute break and then reread what you have and start to edit it into something. Because my thought is that once you start to brain dump, you're already in the mindset of like you're supposed to working on a dissertation. Your thoughts will naturally go towards your dissertation, but for whatever reason, if it doesn't, then that's not gonna happen for that day. And you can put that down and come back so it later. Or are you gonna just wait until your next writing schedule.
But I mean writing date, but that's why it's important to always be on a schedule because your brain knows and has built in time for you to make progress. Even if one of those days or whatever, you're not feeling it or it's not happening. Maybe you have life going on. So systems. So we talked about mindset and systems and then the last part of the get it done framework is community. Again, we're not meant to be alone. So having a way to have some weekly support and accountability is helpful. So if you have a writing group, is it really being honest with yourself? One, is it really supportive and help them keep you accountable or is it more like social hour or does it make you not feel comfortable in some way? Um, and there's another r, are there some things that you can do?
So are there some parameters that you can set? Um, do you all need to be more persistent? Do you need to like hold off talking or put a timer limit on talking? Is there a way that you can build in to share wins with them? They'll be like, yes, I got approved to collect data or yes, I found the right methodology. Like who are your group of people? Yeah. And it's important to be around people who challenge you and is also important for you not to be the smartest one in your circle. Because if you are, if you're the smartest or the most dedicated or the most consistent one, you're in the wrong circle and you need a new circle, you need a new writing group. Um, because again, you can only go as far as your mindset and your mindset is highly influenced by those you spend the most time with.
So whenever it comes to your dissertation and you're with the same writing group, but they're not really to as serious or dedicated about it, didn't you that we'll feed or rub off on you. So how can you find a group that's going to challenge you and support you? A hold you accountable and you feel like my bad, I don't, I don't know. That's I what I have and I'll have access. I got to take what I have and I want to offer you an opportunity to join right away. It's my weekly writing accountability group. Folks. Uh, most folks are working on some form of their dissertation, but other people are using it just so they know that they have dedicated time to do dishes. Uh, planning for the week, meal prep for the week. We, um, we meet twice a week, but I just encourage people to come at least once a week.
So we meet on Sundays from four to 7:00 PM eastern standard time and we meet Wednesdays 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM eastern standard time. Um, it's encouraged that you're there the whole time, but if not, because life happens and that starts to get late. We understand people leave early or come in and out. Um, but it's that time is there for you. We start off each call with something about mindset or a some productivity tip or just sharing like what's going on in that week. We spent a good 15, 20 minutes just catching up with one another, encouraging one another, and then we spend the rest of the rest of the time just talking. I mean, excuse me y'all. Yes. So this live, most of the time after that 15 or 20 minutes I'm working, everyone keeps their camera on so you can see other people working because there's something about the brain and being able to see people, uh, working away or typing that tells you like, oh, I need to get back on it.
And then if someone sees you doing something else, probably send you like a private message. Like, hey girl up, you do it. I'll probably, I'm most likely I'm doing it like, Hey, what you doing? You look like you're like watching TV. What's happening? You need to talk, you need to check in. Cause you know, sometimes people are going through a lot and they just need somebody to talk to. And then we, I like sometimes we'll have conversation if I have time because I'm also doing work and things. And so, um, catch up with people to help them through that and be supportive. And usually I find like a good 15-30 minutes of talking, people can then get start working and you would be surprised what you can get done in an hour or two hours or three hours. Like people are writing whole dissertations up in here.
And so we, the Check-in Sundays and Wednesdays are usually the days where we're like, oh shit, we need to get something done. Sunday is like the beginning of the week where you're like, okay, I'm going to have this plan, I'm going to get done. And then Wednesday night comes and you're like, oh, I haven't done anything. I should. I have assignments. And so those have, we have found, I mean we've been doing this almost a year now and found that those two days work really well, especially while we're in the middle of the semester. So if this sounds like something that you would love to join, you want to be a part of, just the link will be in the show notes or you can come on over to Instagram and DM me at @MarvetteLacy, or you'd go to the website, Marvette lacy.com. Links will be there for you to sign up. We would love to have you. Um, and that's gonna do it for this episode. I didn't intend for it to be this long. The latest ones have been long. You're welcome. But that is how I'm going to wrap up. Um, and so next week, do something to show yourself some love and I will talk to you then. Bye for now.
The following podcast episode was taken from an Instagram Live recording. Follow me at @marvettelacy to see future Live videos!
Transcript of Episode:
Hello, this is Marvette your dissertation strategist. I help you write your dissertation successfully defend it so you can graduate and become a doctor. I'm a little bit rusty cause I feel like I haven't done a live in a while. So I'm just gonna pin this comment here. Today I wanted to talk about the 10 lessons I've learned since being in business for two years and I wanted to share just a little bit about my story because I don't really talk much about it. I am also procrastinating a little bit right now as I'm supposed to be doing other things, but I thought I would do two things at once since I have missed a lot from the past week or so and I need to record a podcast episode. So I want to do both. But I, let's see, my story really starts three years ago, so my business anniversary will be on September seven.
Because September 7th, 2017 is when I had my first paying client. And that is a day I'm choosing to say as my anniversary because although I do like all the backend stuff and put in the paperwork to have a legal business, I didn't have a client until September seven, which I'll tell you more about my story. In a lot of people will say like, they started a business, but until you are actually making money and you have a client or a customer, then you do not have a business. You have a very expensive hobby probably. So anyway, my story actually happens or it takes place three years ago, 2016 in the fall of 2016 when I first decided that I was going to get serious about starting my own business, I was supposed to be, you know, progressing through. I was in my phd program and I think at that point, yeah, I was actually working on my dissertation.
And if you are in the dissertation phase and you know, you get all of the ideas, you think about all the other things that you can't do or you should be doing instead of writing your dissertation because you don't want to write it. And so that happened with me and I was like, you know, I wanna start my own business because if I start now and then I give myself a whole year, then by the time I'm ready to graduate I'll have a job. Cause in my mind it was only going to take less than a year and I was going to have this very booming business that I didn't need to go find a job and everything will take care of itself. So this is like September ish of 2016. There was someone named Happy Black Woman is her business, her handle all of that. She was promoting that she was doing her annual course, which helps women to launch their business pretty much walking you through all the steps you would need to have a business.
And so I decided to take some money and sign up for it. And it was not cheap. Okay. It was not cheap. I don't, I can't quite remember, but I just know it was not, it was four figures anyway, so I signed up for it cause I was like, yes, I want you to tell me exactly what to do and I'm going to do that. So I signed up for the course. I did all of that. So it had to think about like exactly what your business was going to be. And at the time my business was focused on helping women who were currently in toxic relationships as a result of past sexual abuse. Now I'm sure as you hear that, you can understand why that didn't quite work out so well. Also, it didn't work out well because it's like, how can I help someone when I was in a situation myself, I do my own work and as similar to students who come into qualitative research, they're usually choosing topics that are very personal to them.
And it's like, research is me search. You're trying to figure out your own stuff until you decide you're going to do a research project, but then that just opens up a big can of worms. And that, that wasn't working. So that business idea didn't work. But I decided that I was going to keep going with helping women get out of toxic relationships. So that was my first business. I'm looking at my notes by the way. And I did that. I did that all for fall 16, but I didn't get any clients. Right. And so then spring of 2017 came when I was really supposed to be writing my dissertation and I decided that I was going to work with a different coach because I did technically launch my business. Like I had the business license and all of that. I just didn't have any clients.
Right. and so I was like, well, I'm going to go find another business coach who will help get the clients. And so I signed up with her and she, you know, she had some good ideas. It was just like a lot of information being thrown at me and I was very nervous to do the things that she was suggesting. So, which is pretty much not putting myself out there. So like actually tell people on Facebook that I have a business, actually ask people for sales, actually do sales calls. And it was just a lot. But working with her, I would say the, the, the best thing that came out of that was helping me to see that my first business topic was not going to work out. And she was actually the one that suggested that I help people with qualitative research, which then later became helping people write their dissertation.
But at first it was just going to be explaining qualitative research to people like a, like a class that you could take. And so I did that. And so this was early spring 2017. And that was one of the other things, I became more consistent with writing blog posts. And I was, I was telling people like on Facebook and stuff and doing some calls. But it just wasn't working out and, but I kept going. I graduated and that took precedent because if you know anything about my story, I needed to do my dissertation in four months. And so I did that. I graduated, felt like I went through like a hurricane or something. I was just all over the place in that summer of 17. And then I moved from Georgia to Wisconsin, started a new job and then I was like, alright, I'm getting serious about this whole business thing.
And if you listen to my podcast of like two weeks ago, I talked to you about how I would go to my nine to five. Like I would work before my nine to five for like two hours. I would go to my nine to five. And then after my nine to five, I would work another five or six hours at Starbucks. And then Saturdays and Sundays I spent all day, like from 9:00 AM to like they close 9:00 PM at Starbucks, Saturday and Sunday to work on my business. And again, while I was putting out all this content, I wasn't making any money and September, Labor Day was coming, rolling around and I decided, you know what, I'm just gonna write this random email and see what happens. So my dad's birthday is September 4th. The holiday is usually around that time. And fall is my favorite season.
And usually people think about Labor Day as the end of summer and beginning of fall. So I wrote this random email that was like in celebration of my favorite season, I'll give you 40% off. Whew. You know, the journey is, I know the journey to the pricing thing has been one. But yeah, that's what I said. I'll give you 40% off of my price, which was only a hundred dollars at that time, but I'll give you 40% off and you can sign up with me for, I think it was like 12 weeks of coaching and one person did sign up with me and to help her finish her chapters four and five, she had did data collection, but she, she was really highly motivated. Like she had a plan and knew what she wanted to do. But because her program didn't have many or any qualitative researchers, she was looking for someone to help her really craft the end of the dissertation and wrap it all up.
And so we met all through that fall and working with her to finish. And she did graduate. That was great. But I share that story to say like one that is my story. It as the beginning of how I started and got my first paying client. But I also remember like that whole year, the, the one main thought that kept going through my mind is I, I just wish I could get one client. Like, if I could get one client and I know that this is real good, I know I can do this. That was my mindset. Looks like if I could just get this one person, then I know that like, I can be successful at this. And I got that one person and that did give me courage and I started to, you know, build up and get more clients. But I just think that's interesting now two years later looking back, it's like, Oh, if only I knew.
So I do want to talk about like lessons I learned. So based off of that, the number one is being like, I'm just beginning. Like the journey is just starting and that can relate to the like the doctoral process is because you like get into the program, right? And everybody wants to rush through courses cause they're like, okay, I've done this before. I just need to take these classes and get took dissertation. Cause once I do that and I graduate and they call me doctor, that's it. But then you quickly learn that once you defend your dissertation and you're graduating, you realize that's just the beginning. Especially if you're going to be in academia where you like go out and if you're going to continue writing and researching, you realize that dissertation, while they seem huge at the time, really wasn't even the tip of the iceberg.
And there was a whole journey and it could be a wonderful journey if you allow it to be, you just realize that it's just the beginning. So that was the first thing and that I can see my future so clearly now, like I can see how like I can see how successful I'm going to be. The second thing is that based off of that is fear will always be there as you are growing. Like fear never goes away. You're gonna always be nervous. It's it can help you as cliche as that sounds, but fear, fear will be something that you come to expect. Especially if we continue to push yourself into grow, it will always be there. So that's number two. Number three, the more aware you become of who you are, your mindset or the things that you have to do, the more you will want to hide, the more you want to run away and hide from what you know you should be doing.
So, even though it's been two years from me and I was, you know, before like I don't want to put myself out there, I still like sometimes have to navigate that cause even now like doing this live, I had to like talk myself up because I still get nervous going live and talking and all of that. But I would say it's not as it once was because I've done this before. I'm getting more comfortable with it. It's just, it's just a part of the process. So that's number three. And number four, you do not need a lot of money to start a business. You don't need a logo. Stop it with the logo, stop it with, I need to make my website pretty. You don't need to do that. Stop it. You don't need it. And you just need to start really, really like simple things.
You need to know who you're helping, what you're helping them with. And then you need to tell them and talk with them. People underestimate the power of building connections with people, like talking to them, getting to know more about them. We can only think about like what it is that you want. And this happens in the dissertation process too is like when you get into data collection, a lot of students, we spend a lot of time and I tell them like, this isn't about you. People are sharing with you their good time, their good experiences. They're taking time out of their lives to like sit down with you for hours to do interviews. And you are not even thinking about them. All you're thinking about is when you're going to finish your dissertation and how you're going to publish, but you don't take time to think about like how do you compensate people for their labor, for their time, for them sharing with you.
So that was also another siren. But yes, for your business, you don't need all this money and these fancy websites and logos and colors. You're wasting your time and it's easy for you to think about those things because you feel like you know how to do that. But it's more difficult to actually go and help someone and get a client. And that's what you know I was struggling with too, is that I was scared to put myself out there and I let that fear stop me from actually making money on my business. So that was Four number Five is consistency and discipline is key. You can have the most talent in the room. There can be people who seem like they got it all together, whatever. But people like out the people can't outwork you or I would say people can't outwork me as my attitude that I have.
So I'm going to continue to show up and be consistent and be disciplined in learning my craft. Because I know that hard work outperforms talent at the end of the day. I said that really clunky, but I think you get what I'm saying. The next is that people are always watching even when you don't know that they are. So sometimes people get caught up in like the number of followers they have or the number of likes they get on something or even like the number of clients that you have. And sometimes it can seem like no one is paying attention. You can feel like, why am I doing this? This doesn't make any sense. But I always get a message or DM or someone will say something in passing to be like, please keep going. Thank you so much for what you've been doing has been really encouraging and motivating.
And so people may not say that when the actual posts or whatever you're putting out there, but someone is always watching. And to remember that because you don't know what role you are planning on someone's life, you don't know how much you may be helping someone. And not everyone is going to feed your ego all the time cause that's really was happening when you were looking at likes numbers and clients and the money and all of that. It's your ego. But if you are committed to helping people, then stay focused on that. Instead of thinking about vanity metrics of likes and numbers and when that, the next is keep the simple interest start. I may have said this before, but just what is the easiest thing or the easiest next step you can take and then take it? Whenever I get too caught up in my head or overwhelmed, I just asked myself, what is the next thing that you can do and just do that.
And that's what I do. And I tell clients all the time that the motivation in a way that we've been taught about it as a society, as a lie, as not, it's not not that it's not a thing, but like it's not gonna sustain you. Momentum will sustain you. So if you can continue to take little small steps and keep going, that will continue to build up and keep you pushing longer and further than you know, you getting, you go and get an all hyped up from somebody and think that's motivation. You can only go as far as your mindset. So if you are not continuing to work on your mind and your thoughts, then you will not be able to continue to progress further. Which is where like all the, the fears and the doubts and all of that, that's a result of how you're thinking about yourself, Your Business, your dissertation or whatever it is that you're doing.
And if you don't have a mechanism in place to really examine your thoughts or be able to start to shift them over time that goes back to like understanding what it is that you want who you want to be and having a a way to like manage that. And that's really why I believe that I had such a hard time with like anxiety and depression. Not to say that it's completely gone, but that's, I think it compounded it I guess. Because I didn't have something in place to help me navigate with that, which then leads to my next one, which I don't know what number I'm on, so we're just gonna go with it. The next thing I would say is that you have to have faith in something bigger than yourself, even if you don't believe in God per se or no, not Christian or whatever.
Having some sort of faith or belief system or this universe, whatever, Buddhism, whatever, that is, having something bigger than you to believe in because there's going to come to a point where you're just going to have to let go and just believe that it's gonna happen. But if you don't have something to anchor yourself, it causes a whole other host of challenges and problems. And then the last thing is to get help because nobody can do it alone. Even people you think are doing it, they, they appear to doing it alone. They're not, they have a team behind them. There's always usually like a person that's like a silent partner that you may not be able to see or they have a community of folks that just helps them. But you cannot do this by yourself as humans. We are not meant to be by ourselves.
And so whatever you have to do, whatever community you have to join, that's going to help you and you will see so much growth and I'm getting distracted cause I'm guessing my job has been announced. So I'm going to go see if it has. But yeah, I wanted to share. Those are the lessons that I've learned. I've been in business for two years. It'll be two years on September 7th. And I'm so excited about what the journey has been and what it will be, and I'm happy to share it with you all. So I be curious to know if any of these lessons resonated with you, anything that you taken from this live, please let me know. DM me, whenever you're watching on the replay and I'm going to do and go, go and do actual work now because I'm supposed to be working. But thank you for watching and I will talk to you later. Do something to show yourself some love. Until next time. Bye for now.
Transcript of Episode:
Hello. So I'm going to record, and this is my last episode in this batch and series. So who knows what will come out of my mouth, but I would like to welcome you to another week. After this I am going to the gym and work out to get some energy. And that ties in perfectly to what I'm going to be talking about today. So today's episode is about how do I get focus or energy. So I received...I Asked folks to give me their questions on Instagram. That's how I figured out what would be the best thing to talk about. And I got a lot of responses about, you know, feeling like don't have energy or I can't focus. Feeling like I should quit my job and then maybe that'll help me finish my dissertation quicker. What else do I have? Health issues. In what ways have you found it helpful to set up yourself for a good night's sleep? Which I also will lump into this category. So yeah, and people just come to me. I mean, I had an episode what, two weeks ago about
How to, Now, I just went blank. Y'all.
Oh, how I balance it all. I'm in a lot, some of that I'm going to talk about this week. But I really want to talk about this feeling of like burnt out. Yeah. Burnt out just over it, exhausted. People will tell you that this is a common thing throughout the phd process or in life. I don't believe that has to be true. I don't believe that at all, especially being on this side of things. Cause it's different when you are working towards a goal and you are like, your body is tired because you've been doing a lot, right? You've been performing but you don't feel burnt out or stressed versus you feel burned out, stressed exhausted and your body feels that way as a result and you don't feel it. You don't find any joy in the process whatsoever. So, you know, like my favorite thing is to look at it particularly like athletes or just even performers, you know, Beyonce, the GOATs. And just thinking about like, you know, like watching your interviews and whatnot and
Them pushing their bodies to the limit to achieve a goal right? To 'em that the way I'm drinking my water. So achieve a goal or to be a better performer or in the field or arena or whatever. That's a different type of stress on the body and energy output. Right? But their mental state is that they're focused on their goal to be the best to win the game, to have more ticket sales. Right? That's a different type of energy and mindset it's not depleting energy. It's building up cause you're working, building momentum towards something. Whereas where most typically I find that people are asking me about is that they feel depleted. They feel like, you know, this dissertation process does not fill them and in, in any way, in any capacity that they're not, they can't find any joy. They're falling out of love with their dissertation and they don't, they are actually thinking of leaving their program and quitting.
And I want to talk about how to get from that energy to more of the, this process. I'm learning a lot. It's filling me up. I feel joy from it. Okay. So I hope that like makes sense. So a lot of what I talk about is like the process and the focus on one thing at a time, right? You can't go from step one to step 10, right? We got to go from step one and step two and how do we do that? And even when we get to like step six and step seven and we can see step ten in the distance, how do we stay at the step six or seven instead of trying to hop over to step 10? Cause again, it doesn't matter how far along you are in the process, you need to continue to do the steps cause that's how you get to step 10 quicker.
Than you trying to jump over all the steps. Okay. so to you know, I had to talk about Beyonce. It's been weeks. I haven't even talked about her. Y'all. Okay. So now I'm big Beyonce fan. And be honest. I had just reached a new high of fame and her career after her third solo album, I feel like a Beyonce historian or something. But after her third solo album, I am Sasha Fierce, right. More people started to know who she was. You have singles like like Single Ladies Diva and the biggest Halo, right? That it's international success. And that tour was bananas, right? She was on a tour for a very long time. And she started to record her fourth album and her but I actually started thinking about that because those things overlap.
And her Mama said to her, hey girl, hey, you're doing the absolute most right. You don't even, she was, she, Beyonce even said like, it got to the point where she didn't know what city she was in country. She was in. Everything started to look the same. She couldn't hear like, she couldn't see like all the fans, it just all became a blur. And she was working all these hours. And if you follow Beyonce you know, like for her to say she was working a lot meant that she was probably working 20 hours a day and not sleeping very much. And so her mom said, hey girl hey, you need to take a break. I don't know what you're doing but you need to take a whole break. So she decided to take a whole year off to experience life. Now you know, that may have been some other reasons why I have my theories, but we don't go with it at face value.
So she took a whole year off where she just traveled the world, she got to reconnect with loved ones. She got to take her nephew to school and be with him and spend some time with him in Paris. I felt like a stalker that I have this information anyway. Uhang out with her husband, get married. Ujust have all these experiences that she said gave her time to reflect and really think about who she was and who she wanted to be and where she saw her career going. Because for all intents and purposes, she had made it to the point that I'm sure she dreamed about right when she was nine years old and wanted that first record deal. Like she had reached a height of success that most people wish they could. Like most recording artists wish they would get to like diva was,uI am Sasha Fierce, excuse me, was like the album of this is it.
Right. And the next level above that, it's a whole new level that most people don't even get to. So this year that she took off I think gave her a lot of time because then when she comes back to introduce album four she also makes the announcement that her father would no longer manage her. She will manage herself, that she will own her own management company and manage herself and have her own team. She will have her own production team. She will be in control, complete control of her whole career. She got married, she got pregnant. And it was also like a new sound because a lot of people don't like four the album. It sounds different than I am Sasha Fierce. It felt more mature it felt, I don't know, it just felt to me, I don't know other language is failing me right now in terms of, it just felt different.
But it gave her space to be able to say like, if I'm going to go to the next level of my career, right, if I'm gonna go to Michael Jackson status, I'm gonna have to get some people who can help me get there because what got me here is not going to get me to that level. The people who I'm grateful for who got me to this height in my career can't get me to their next level of where I'm trying to go. So she cleaned house for the most part, got some new teams, still had core people around her who've been with her from day one. But people rose had to change and they had to adjust and she had to get a new team around her. She had to become more confident or knowing herself because to manage yourself, it's a whole other thing.
Find people who could get her in markets and avenues that she hadn't been in before. You also see differences in Jay z career, but this not about him, and we don't talk about him really that much, but you know, you see them two, that there was a different type of alignment between them two because it's title and all those things started to come out. I'm digressing, we're not talking about Jay Z. But yet you see all these changes and then after four, right, self title comes out, that's a whole new level of success. Lemonade comes out, it's exploding, right? That high is like it is it, but it has, she not taken that year off, got a chance to refocus, change her team around. Right. And then do something different. We wouldn't see the first black woman to headline Coachella though we are today. Now.
What does Beyonce have to do with the dissertation process? I use that as an analogy to say this is your year of, Four like the year before your quote unquote "Four" dissertation comes out. This is your like defining moment up to this point. You've been in school for 20 plus years, right? Like some of us did Pre-k, you got k through 12 you got Undergrad, some of us have master's degrees and then you have your whatever your program is like two to three years of coursework. Right up to this point, we've been in school for a very long time. Meaning we've been showing up to places where someone hands us a syllabus or some sort of information that says this is when you need to meet, here's your schedule. Classes are these days. Here's the topic of the class, here's what we're gonna hear, the sub topics that we're going to cover and use.
This topic that you will learn over the next 16 weeks. Here are the readings that you need to do. Here are the assignments and very great detail to make sure that you understand those sub topics and to make sure you understand the larger topic and here's your exam dates, right? You've been showing up to our room where other people are there in some form of fashion when most of it has probably been in person. Maybe as you have grown in your educational journey and made me more of those classes have been online, but in some capacity you have shown up with other folks to learn about these, this one thing in each of this, in these classes and doing assignments and activities to make sure you have mastered that topic. Someone has been checking in with you weekly if not more. Someone has been responsible for giving you feedback on your mini assignments, someone who's been responsible for planning class discussions, right, and it has helped you to get to this far like get this far in this far being now you're at the dissertation stage in the final thing for you to become Dr for everyone else to know that when they see those three letters behind your name or they see doctor in front of your name, they now know that you are an expert in your field. Right? Because that, that's what that denotes, that you are an expert about this building. You should in theory be able to talk about this and this one area in very great detail in day, you should be a producer of knowledge within this area of focus. Right? So I equate you getting to this point in your dissertation to Beyonce getting to, I am Sasha Fierce, because before that she had what? That would've been four albums, five albums, cause there was a Christmas album, five or six albums with Destiny's child and she would have had three albums of her own, if not more. I'm probably missing some things plus some random singles or whatnot. Right. She had put in a consistent amount of work to get to I am Sasha fierce. Right. She had made it and people had been telling her to do things and is very cookie cutter type way a course like
Yeah, she brought her own thing to it. Right. That's what made her successful. But up to that point, people have been telling her like what's been working over the years and for her to have achieved what has been working and get to a level of success that most people don't get to. She did that, but now it's like, what's next? This is your, what's next? It is up to you to figure it out. So how are you going to now be like Beyonce and manage yourself? Be Your own manager because your chair is there, yes, to guide you and to help you. But really you're leading this ship, especially if you listen to last week's episode, you're leading this. So what are you gonna do? And I would say that one of the biggest reasons why you probably feel like you can't focus and you don't have energy and you're burnt out and you're over it. It's because you haven't either realized that, that you're the one leading this ship or you have realized it and it freaks you out and you're like, I don't know what to do. I'm not ready. So I always say that everything comes back to mindset that you have to come to terms with. I'm the one that's leading this process and I have to show up for myself and that I'm willing to put into the work, put the work in and take ownership of this dissertation process and that I'm ready to do it.
That is really what it is. You believing that you are ready to be the one that's leading your dissertation ship. All these analogies.
That is the first thing. Even if you can't fully believe that you're ready, at least me in saying at least saying that I'm ready to take the next step. Right? I'm on step four. I'm at least ready to go step five. I may not be ready to be at step 10 but I'm the least ready to be at step five. I'm at least ready to figure out what I need to do to be at step five. So that is the first thing of the first way to like shift energy of like getting out of victim mode. Nothing is happening to you. It's happening for you. So you can get out of that mode of like, oh, woe is me. And being like, okay, great. I have control over my actions and my thoughts. I am willing to do whatever it takes to get to the next level. Okay, what do I have to do? That's step one. Step two then is getting some first. So in this, in this this vein of like mindset, I'm taking control. How do you keep this momentum going in your mindset? What is going to be your routine for managing your mind?
I believe that you should have some sort of spiritual component, whether that is God, whether that is meditating, whether that is some eastern practices, whether that's like yoga, having something, being able to believe in something bigger than you to lean on in terms of that you can have faith in. Will help keep you grounded. The third piece is having some sort of daily routine to remind you that yes, you have control over you. And you have something that's bigger than you to help keep you anchored in having some way to reconnect with that thing that's bigger than you and reconnect with yourself. So having some, a daily practice that helps you with that.
The next thing is picking one thing to focus on in the moment. So we're not trying to do the whole dissertation right now on step four. We're just trying to know that our topic and get really clear about what our topic is. And then step five, we're just trying to get done with chapter two. That is it. We're not trying to do chapter three and then jump to chapter two and then think about IRB and then come back to chapter one. Then go to chapter two again. That is how you gotta slow yourself down. Find that one thing that if in the moment it feels like this is too easy or I'm never gonna finish this way, if I just focus on one thing, when you start to think like that, that's how you know you're in the right spot. Finding that one thing that you feel like in your mind. And so easy that you will finish it in no time. Focus on that. Do that first, and then move to the next thing.
How am I going on a rant? I'm avoiding going on rants, but finding one thing to focus on finishing that one thing and then movingq to the next thing. No more doing all the things, because that is why your energy has been divided. That's why you're feeling all over the place. And that's what leads to feeling burnt out. Focusing on one thing, finishing that one thing. And remember when we're finishing that one thing, we're giving it a B minus c plus effort when it gets to that level, right? We're just passing. When we get to that, that's how we know we're finished. We finished it, and we're gonna move on to the next step because we're not getting stuck and making things perfect. Or a is there a plus? No. A a. We're not doing that. We're, we're about making progress over perfection. Okay? And then the final thing going back to Beyonce Who's going to be your people, who's going to be your team? And your team's going to have to change cause we're, we're at a different point now. We're no longer just going to class and being real cute with our assignments and what not. We are writing a dissertation and many of you are writing a dissertation that a lot of people like there's not a lot of other people who have done it before. A lot of you are writing dissertations that is speaking truth to power. This talking about equity and justice. And that's gonna require a different set of team around you because not everybody is woke, quote unquote,
You'll chair might not getting your committee may not get it. They might not have the level or depth of analysis about systemic oppression as you do. And that's a whole separate mistake that you may be making an assumption you may be making that you think everybody knows what you know, that is obvious to them like it is to you, but it's not. And so you're gonna need a team of folks around you who understand what it is that you talk, that you're talking about, that believe in what you're talking about and sees the importance in what you're talking about. Because even if that's not your committee or chair, who else is going to be around you to help you prepare for presenting your, your research and your data to your committee to get that passed. So you can be doctor who's going to be those folks and it doesn't got to be a lot of folks, but having someone who can do that, having people around you who will help you make sure that you're showing up for yourself and for your dissertation consistently having folks who you can bounce ideas off of. Who can push you and make sure like they're giving you things that you probably haven't thought about who can read over your stuff and give you feedback.
Who can love on you when you just having a moment. And you just over it. Cause we all have our moments. Getting you a team in place. Okay. When you have those things. So when you have your,uwhen you take ownership for your life, when you have, you believe in something bigger than you, when you have a daily routine, when you get focused on that one thing that you need to do, and when you have good people around you, I promise you, they, you will see a major shift in your energy and focus. You will even probably believe that you don't even need to quit your job to finish your dissertation because you believe that you know how to do it.
Now, there are some other things about schedules and whatnot and like time management that you need to do, but that is like nothing compared to these five things. These five things are what really will keep you going. And I talk about the other time management productivity, productivity tips on like two weeks ago, that podcast about how I like balance it all. But this will give you a renewed energy because then when we look at Beyonce and we look at after Four the momentum that has happened, the shift in her career to shift how she even showed up, the risks she was, she was able to take the more confident that she even appeared to be. You know, going towards the area of like talking about feminism and women in business and like being free to explore. We started to hear from her more like in terms of her philosophies and career and whatnot and not necessarily her like during the interviews, but that's a whole other thing.
My point is you, you see a shift and so this is now your time to shift. This was the make or break. This is your year that you like reorganize things and get it together because your dissertation is just the beginning. The goal of this is just to be the beginning is not meant to be the best thing that you've ever written is meant to be your starting point. It is your year before you produce. Album four is your year to figure out what it is that you want and where you're going, what you're going to do, and how you can do it. Because after you have those three letters and you are called doctor, there's a what's next? What are you going to do next? Cause a dissertation and a phd is just starting point and I want to see amazing things from you and I want to see you do great things, but it starts here. So I would love to know what you thought about this week's episodes. Any ah-has, any takeaways. Come on over to Instagram at @Marvettelacy and let me know. Or you can come over to Facebook at Qual Scholars Facebook group and we will be happy to talk with you about the podcast. That is all for this week. I'm going to the gym. I'm going to eat lunch and enjoy the rest of my day. So until next time, do something to show yourself some love. Bye for now.