The ‘Wal-Mart’ Stigma: Who are the ‘real’ people of Wal-Mart?

The ‘Wal-Mart’ Stigma: Who are the ‘real’ people of Wal-Mart?

The People Of Wal-MartI am an adult who had never shopped at Wal-Mart a day in her life until last year.

Okay, my mother and father might have taken me when I was a child. However, as an adult I had never willingly gone to Wal-Mart.

I knew that there was a certain negative stigma that comes with Wal-Mart and the people who work or shop there. I knew dirty people who worked at Wal-Mart.

I saw, just like everyone else, photos of people at Wal-Mart showing off their back boobs and men in Speedos checking out. I read the Google “fat costumes” article about Wal-Mart and their lack of decency. I was totally turned off by that store.

I felt like the people who shopped at Wal-Mart were below me. I don’t wear sweatpants out in public…like EVER! I don’t have crazy hair! I don’t have back boobs! I don’t wear nude leggings either.

The People Of Wal-MartI dress appropriately for my age. I love my kids and would never strap them to the bottom of a cart. I would never have poop stains let alone leave the house with them. I have self decency.

It seemed that the people who went to Wal-Mart did NOT!

I was wrong. I will be the first to admit it. I went to Wal-Mart last year. I learned so much about people and myself during this time.

1. Not everyone who goes to Wal-Mart is homeless – The people who shop at Wal-Mart are not homeless nor do they lack common sense. Some dress like they have no place to live but those people are the ones who don’t care what others think about them. I want to be more like that. I want to be able to walk out of the house in the middle of the night in my pjs to get meds for my kid without feeling judged too. (however, I will never leave the house without makeup) That must feel liberating! I am too judgmental of myself.

2. You look better than 99.99999999% of everyone there – Let’s face it. Wal-Mart is known for it’s crazy looking people. Need an esteem boost? How about a little pick me up? Go to Wal-Mart! I don’t even have to walk all the way inside sometimes. Just walking up to the door is enough for me.

3. You DO NOT have to wear spandex to shop at Wal-Mart – From photos on the web I was for certain that you had to wear spandex to shop at Wal-Mart. Preferably nude, two sizes too small spandex. I have since learned that you do not.

4. Their prices are great – We all know that some stuff at stores is priced higher. I’m not saying that Wal-Mart doesn’t do that too. However, I am saying that when I shop at a regular store versus Wal-Mart I do end up spending less. (What’s a “regular” store? Anything that is not Wal-Mart I consider a regular store.)

5. It’s an everything store – Groceries and clothes and electronics and paint and car repair and pet store and automotive store and why wouldn’t you shop here store? I was naive. I can now go to Wal-Mart and have my tires rotated, get a new car key made, while waiting on my living room paint to be mixed, grab the kid’s soccer shorts he needs for school, the daughter’s jewelry was fixed and is ready to be picked up at the jewelry counter, and I can get dinner for tonight even hot food all at one place. That’s a win, win, win!

The People Of Wal-Mart

I do not see people taking photos ever. I was always worried I’d be in the background of a Wal-Mart person’s photo shoot.

I have never witnessed someone posing in the dairy section for their senior photos.

I haven’t seen people having sex on the futons either. (bummer?) I do see strange people but that’s part of the fun.

I had totally the wrong idea of what this store was. Wal-Mart is just a regular store with a little something extra…everything!

I’m waiting for a nail salon and photo studio to come to our local store. Then my life will be complete.

www.QueenBeeing.com/DIY

www.QueenBeeing.com/DIY

How to Deal When the World Disappoints You

How to Deal When the World Disappoints You

“I believe in pink. I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing, kissing a lot. I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day and I believe in miracles.” ~Audrey Hepburn

audrey3I love that quote. I really do–it’s one of my favorites. But look, I’m going to be super honest here–and I hope you take this for what it’s worth, some days, I just don’t quite feel it.

If you’ve been reading my work long, you know I’m responsible for a variety of niche websites. As the creator of QueenBeeing and all of its current sub-sites (How to Be a Hot Wife, Project Blissful, #StyleBuzz Project Blissful Style, for example), I’m really pretty familiar with ME and how to be the best possible me I can be.

See, all of these sites have one thing in common: they’re focused on becoming BETTER—a better version of myself.

In fact, all of those sites led to this one; that’s why QueenBeeing exists—it is the whole enchilada—everything that, for me, represents being the best possible version of myself and of creating and living the life I desire, all collected in one beautiful, ever-evolving place.

Each site was representative of a certain part of myself that I was working to improve or otherwise more fully embrace in my life—my marriage, my physical and mental health, my fashion sense—just to name a few.

And as you may or may not know, I’ve had some pretty tremendous results thanks to this commitment—but it doesn’t mean I’m perfect.

I am my brand and I try to always follow my own advice.

I actively and diligently practice what I preach here, too—no joke. Everything I personally write about, unless otherwise noted and/or quoted, is something that I have personally experienced, attempted or personally discovered/realized through my studies and research of people and sociology. And, just like my readers, I’m ever-evolving, always trying to be and do better, for myself, my family and the world around me.

With all of that being said, I would love to sit here and tell you that because I am actively attempting to live my own message and to truly BE my personal brand, I have no issues and am always totally 100 percent on point with my whole inner peace/happiness/personal fulfillment deal. I really would.

But I’ve vowed to be myself, to be brutally honest with my readers, so here’s my real truth: I’m totally human. So. Not. Perfect.

And sometimes? The world pisses me off a little bit.

pantiesFor example, last week, my husband turned on some discussion on Fox News channel (which I do not normally watch).

As usual, I zoned out and attempted to focus on my own thing…until I heard some right-wing commenter talking about President Obama and how “the world seems to disappoint him.”

(I’m so not going to comment on the political crap there, because that’s not why I’m mentioning it. Please understand that the following is not in any way a political commentary, it’s just a personal one that is referencing a random comment made about a random person in the world!)

Anyway, in that moment, when I happened to be feeling a little bit surly about the world, I got it.

Sometimes, to be honest, the world disappoints me, too.

So for a minute, I let myself stew on that feeling. About two seconds later, I noticed that particular feeling sucked. I didn’t want to feel like that one second longer—it felt awful. Who wants to be disappointed by the world?

And here, my friends, is where I tell you the good news: I’m not completely full of shit, after all.

I truly do live my message.

Here’s what I did to stop feeling all that negativity and get my head back in the right place.

I just changed my mind.

Yeah, I know, that sounds WAY too simple—and it kinda is—but hear me out. What I mean by change my mind is to change the way I saw the situation–to change my perception.

The very first thing I did was to allow myself to refocus – to literally become distracted from the negative thoughts, but in a super-productive way. I use an internal distraction/redirection technique that involves a simple memorized affirmation phrase. Mine is:

“I now cancel that thought and replace it with this affirmation of my true divine desire: (insert your own better, more positive thought here).”

I do this because making myself think OR say those exact words takes exactly the amount of time that seems to be required to distract myself from the negative thoughts.

That offers me enough time to recognize what I’m doing to myself: the more negatively I allow myself to react, the more of that kind of stuff I’ll be drawing into my life. But if I can stay mostly positive, life will reflect the same kind of mostly awesome. I know this to be true, because I’ve experienced it personally, again and again. I’m constantly amazed by it and always, always grateful. <3

How do you get over it when the world disappoints you? Share your thoughts in the comments section, below.

QB Guide: How to Be the Center of Attention at Every Party

QB Guide: How to Be the Center of Attention at Every Party

“I was about half in love with her by the time we sat down. That’s the thing about girls. Every time they do something pretty… you fall half in love with them, and then you never know where the hell you are..” ~ J D Salinger  

This post might also be entitled “how to make a whole room full of people fall in love with you” or “how to be incredibly irresistible to everyone you meet.”

We’ve all seen her. You know the one–the woman who can walk into any room and instantly have all eyes on her.

She doesn’t miss a beat and pretends not to notice the gazes of both approval and thinly veiled jealousy as she gracefully glides in and inserts herself into the most attractive group in the room, taking center stage as naturally as the rest of us breathe.

She makes it look effortless, being this amazing creature that captures the attention of everyone within a 50-foot radius–and you might wonder exactly how she does it.

Here’s the thing–she’s no different than you or me. In fact, if you look at her really closely, she is probably no more physically attractive either. The reason she seems so much brighter and sparklier than everyone else in the room actually has nothing to do with her perfectly styled look, hair or even the fact that her purple lipstick somehow makes her eyes seem much brighter blue.

Sometimes, she shows up in jeans and a pseudo-broken-in t-shirt, no makeup and her hair piled on top of her head–and still look completely freaking amazing. That bitch! No, no, I kid.

Then there are the times she appears as a plus-sized woman who somehow gets the attention of every hot guy who walks in her path–or as a 60-something southern girl who blows you away with her charm.

The point is that there are certain women who just happen to be the center of attention at every party. The bottom line is this: we all want to know how she does it, but not many of us are willing to walk up to her and ask her. But lucky for you, you’ve got ME, and I happen to be really into the whole sharing information thing.

Now to the meat of this post! I hope you’re sitting down–the secrets are about to spill.

Read more: Confidence is HOT! Check out our FREE 5-Day Self-Confidence Mastery Course, right here.

How to Be the Center of Attention at Every Party

Get the Look

Wear the right outfit. The right outfit will vary from woman to woman and party to party, but generally, consider the following tips when choosing your look.

  • The kind of occasion. If it’s a formal event or a back-yard BBQ, there is a certain type of attire that is most likely appropriate. Unless you’re into negative attention, try to keep your outfit reasonably appropriate to the occasion.
  • Coordination of color. If you’re going to be in a darkened room, then you’ll want to wear a brighter color if you hope to be seen, provided the occasion allows it. If you’re going to be in a well-lit room, you might still consider brighter color(s), but you might add patterns or other small details to the look. And as always, be sure the colors you choose are the ones that make you look the best.
  • The hotness factor. Look, sometimes it’s not okay to walk around with your boobs hanging out. And sometimes, the whole “more is less” thing is legit. The fact is that you can be SUPER HOT without being a SUPER HO. No kidding. So again, appropriately hot.
  • Your personal brand of hot. As important as being appropriate for any occasion is the fact that you need to do what works best for you personally. That is, find the right look for your body, your personality and your overall preferred image. This will obviously vary from person to person based on individual factors, and there’s really no wrong brand of hot–it’s all about what makes you feel confident, beautiful and comfortable. Don’t be afraid to try on several outfits and take photos to see which looks the best.

Get the Attention

Here’s where it gets interesting. The thing is that a confident woman will always grab the attention of a less confident one, eventually, regardless of which of the two is more physically attractive by societal standards. Like the southern belle I recently met proves, a woman’s personality is at least 80 percent of her hotness.

Ask any guy what’s the sexiest quality about a woman that you can’t see in a photo, and he’ll tell you it’s her ability to be self-confident, to be herself or to be “real” with him. So how do you get the attention of a whole roomful of people? Try these tips.

Work the Room

When you enter a room, be sure to make your way around the room and greet everyone you see (or at least those you know) before settling into any particular crowd. That’ll give you the lay of the land and give you an idea of where you want to spend the most time—or you might choose to keep floating all evening. There’s nothing wrong with mingling–or even bringing together groups of people who didn’t know each other before!

You’re Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile

You probably don’t realize how significantly a smile can change your world, but try something for me. Tomorrow, or the next time you’re out in public, make an effort to meet the eyes and smile at everyone you pass. If that’s too much for you, then try smiling at 10 people throughout the day. You’ll be pleasantly surprised when you discover the amazing effect it has on you (and those around you!).

Be Quick With a Joke and to Light Up a Smoke

You don’t really have to light anyone’s cigarette, but the idea is that you show up at every party with a few key tricks up your sleeve.

  • A couple of (appropriately) funny stories and/or jokes—if you come prepared to be funny, you’ll find that people just flock to you. This may seem a bit “calculated,” but the truth is that most attention-grabbing women are way more calculated than they appear.
  • A catchphrase or schtick—this one is optional, but tends to make people remember you. Come up with a cute little phrase, expression or idea that you can share throughout the evening to sort of “brand” yourself,. You’ll be unforgettable.

Make a Grand Entrance

Maybe this seems old-fashioned, but show up a few minutes after everyone else and don’t enter quietly (when it’s appropriate!). When you employ the outfit and confidence tips outlined above, the grand entrance is easy to accomplish.

Listen Like Your Life Depends On It

Here’s the biggest secret to being absolutely irresistable: nearly ALL people, male and female love someone who is genuinely interested in THEM—so the best way to get attention is to be genuinely interested in the people you’re partying with! Find out what makes them tick, what makes them smile—anything they’re willing to share, and hang on every word. When you speak to them again, use the material they shared to spark up a new conversation.

What are your best tips for how to be the center of attention at every party? Share them in the comments section, below!

 

10 Questions Every Queen Bee Should Ask Herself Before Making a Decision

10 Questions Every Queen Bee Should Ask Herself Before Making a Decision

decision-makingOne thing a good Queen Bee does is to understand who she truly is and to let that person shine through in everything she does. But we don’t come out knowing that stuff–we have to figure it out. Especially if we’ve been conditioned to believe that we’re someone we’re not. So let’s start here: ask yourself the following 10 questions to begin discovering who you really are–and to discover what (and IF) you really want to create personal change in your life.

1. What do I really want?
The question of the ages. So many things you want to do with your life and so little time to even go about during the day.

Find something that you are good at can help realize that small step towards improvement. Diligence is the key to know that it is worth it.

2. Should I really change?
Today’s generation has taken another level of redefining ‘self’, or at least that’s what the kids are saying. Having an army of teenage nieces and nephews has taught me that there are far worse things that they could have had than acne or maybe even promiscuity. So how does that fit into your lifestyle?

If history has taught us one thing, it’s the life that we have gone through. Try to see if partying Seventies style wouldn’t appeal to the younger generation, but dancing is part of partying. Watch them applaud after showing them how to really dance than break their bones in break-dancing.

3. What’s the bright side in all of this?
With so much is happening around us there seem to be no room for even considering that light at the end of the tunnel. We can still see it as something positive without undergoing so much scrutiny. And if it’s a train at the end of the tunnel, take it for a ride and see what makes the world go round!

4. Am I comfortable with what I’m doing?
There’s always the easy way and the right way when it comes to deciding what goes with which shoes, or purse, shirt and whatnot. It doesn’t take a genius to see yourself as someone unique, or else we’ll all be equally the same in everything we do. Variety brings in very interesting and exciting questions to be experimented.

5. Have I done enough for myself?
Have you, or is there something more you want to do? Discontentment in every aspect can be dangerous in large doses, but in small amounts you’ll be able to see and do stuff you could never imagine doing.

6. Am I happy at where I am today?
It’s an unfair question so let it be an answer! You love being a good and loving mom or dad to your kids, then take it up a notch! Your kids will love you forever. The same goes with everyday life!

7. Am I appealing to the opposite sex?
You may not officially “know it” but you KNOW that there are things you can do to make yourself more attractive to both yourself and whomever you’re interested in attracting. Whether you shape-up, change the way you wear your clothes or hair, or even your attitude towards people, you should always remember it will always be for your own benefit.

8. How much could I have?
I suppose in this case there is no such things on having things too much or too little, but it’s more on how badly you really need it. I’d like to have lots of money, no denying that, but the question is that how much are you willing to work for it?

9. What motivates me?
What motivates you? It’s an answer you have to find out for yourself. There are so many things that can make everyone happy, but to choose one of the may be the hardest part. It’s not like you can’t have one serving of your favorite food in a buffet and that’s it. Just try it piece by piece.

10. What Really Makes You Tick?
So? What really makes you tick? You can be just about anything you always wanted to be, but to realize that attaining something that may seem very difficult is already giving up before you even start that journey. Always remember, that self-improvement is not just about the physical or philosophical change you have to undergo, but it’s something that you really want.

Money Is Just Energy, Dummies

Money Is Just Energy, Dummies

You know those money issues you struggle with?  The ones that keep you cash poor, that have you maxing out your credit card each month, that keep you from asking for that raise every year? Yeah, those are the ones.  Well, here’s a little something I learned recently – those beliefs and issues surrounding money start WAY earlier than I ever would have imagined.

Case in Point:

money issuesA few weeks ago, as I was crawling towards the coffee pot early one morn, I happened upon my three nieces, along with one of their small neighbor friends, planning a summer job.  Pink, red, and yellow construction paper was strewn all over the front porch and markers were tossed aside – lids off – to dry in the sun that was already baking the concrete.

I stopped, wiped my bleary eyes, and asked what they were doing.

My niece Jocelyn gave me the hand-made poster which outlined their services:

Dog  Wash

If you got a dirty pup we’ll clean them up!

Open Hours 11:00 to 2:30

$2.00 per dog             Any size dog

Not open on holidays and Friday and Mondays and Birthdays

(You will see the dog when you come in the neighborhood)

Plus we dry, brush or put something in their fur, your choice.

It may have been my dull senses upon just waking but I was über proud of my ability to refrain from asking which Friday they are closed (as there seemed to be only one) and whose birthdays they were talking about (the customer’s or theirs) and what “something” they planned to put in the dog’s fur.  (A few hours later, their Dad was not so full of restraint and told Jocelyn that he wanted her to put $4.00 in his dog’s fur.) And, damn. . . “you will see the dog when you come in the neighborhood” – they’re certainly confident aren’t they?  Lastly, I beamed with a pride I couldn’t contain over their correct use of the word “their.”

After my coffee-deprived brain had spell-checked their document I did the math.  For each dog they washed they would make $.50 a piece.

Say what?

The hair on the back of my neck stood on end as I asked, incredulous, “That’s all you’re charging? $2.00 per dog?”

Four heads nodded at me in unison.

“Girls, you are seriously undervaluing yourselves.”

MaKendra, another of my nieces, looked up at me confused, “No we’re not.”

I turned red as a pomegranate. “You should be charging at least $8.00 per dog.  That’s $2.00 a piece per dog.  Your time is more valuable than $.50.  How long is it going to take you to wash each dog? How big are these dogs?  $2.00 is just too low, you’re all worth more than that.”

Then I stopped ranting.  $8.00?  I pay $45.00 for So-kr8z’s S-PaW days (though that $45.00 includes the massaging of his oh-so-delicate anal glands – a task which I’d happily pay $150.00 for.) But even I, at the age of 40, am undervaluing time and energy.  Yes, even I was ball-parking low for these girls. What’s with that and where does it come from?

I got my answer

Days later I was talking with their Dad – who is probably the hardest working guy I know, as is their mother.  These two parents are on the go from 7:00 am until 1:00 am Every. Single. Day. working their guts out.  And they’re not rich.  Yeah, they get by, they have the necessities and some fun toys but they’re not vacationing in the Bahamas every year. They fervently believe that they have to work extra hard for every single red cent. They hope the washer doesn’t break down.

I know, I know, material stuff shouldn’t be important, and you can throw tomatoes and other soft fruit at me later, but bear with me for a moment and hear me say that money and material stuff IS important.  Let me explain.

Money is just energy.

Let me repeat that. Money is just energy. Let’s use the analogy of the ocean in place of money.  The ocean is vast, huge, and, in fact, water covers 70% of the earth’s surface.  And it might be my optimism speaking but I don’t see the oceans drying up any time soon.  So water flows in to the ocean and water flows out but the ocean never dries up.  Money is the same way.

Roald Dahl knew this when he brilliantly penned thee most apropos money quote I’ve ever heard in his novel Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.  Charlie is thinking of selling his Golden Ticket so his family can eat when Grandpa George tells him, “There’s plenty of money out there. They print more every day. But this ticket — There are only 5 of them in the whole world, and that’s all there’s ever going to be. Only a dummy would give this up for something as common as money. Are you a dummy?”

Yup. Me and my family are a bunch of dummies – and so are you if you have issues in regards to the green stuff.  Just as the ocean never dries up, neither does energy and so, therefore, neither does money.

Possessions also have energy.

Many of us with money issues believe it’s “evil” to want things.  So, for example, it’s bad to want that nice house with the freshly painted white fence when you already have a roof over your head.  It’s horrible to want those strappy Manolo Blanik’s right?  Nope.  Possessions have energy too and the only requirement for you in the wanting of something is that you love it.

As part of a social media campaign recently I asked people on Facebook, “What’s your favorite material possession.”  (WOW…  this raised some major angst among people.) Most folks appeared to scratch their heads, hem-haw, and not respond at all.  My guess is that these peeps have money issues and believe that they shouldn’t value the possession of a thing. I thought that too, for the longest time, and I would stand upon my pedestal with a golden aura surrounding my head like a halo while I spouted, “you can’t take ‘stuff’ with you when you die.”

But now I beg to differ. When you love a possession – when you truly value it – you’re imbuing that possession with energy. Perhaps the best example is to use an item from your childhood that you still hold on to.  One of my most valued material possessions is a blanket that my Grandma made for me when I was ten. Over the years this blanket has traveled thousands of miles with me.  This blanket has been washed more than I have. It’s vibrant canary yellow color has faded to a dingy off-white.  The stuffing is matted and falling out and sticks to my clothes whenever I huddle beneath it.  But I love this blanket.  Like L. O. V. E. love.  Every time I use it, and feel that feeling of utter comfort, I myself am giving this blanket some of my energy.

My point is that every material possession that you value and love is full of energy.  Haven’t you heard the wise sages and money gurus tell you, over and over, to surround yourself only with that which you love?  To pare down, clean house, de-clutter?  This is why. Because what you love has value and energy.  In the case of my blanket, someone out there in the world made the material that my Grandmother bought in order to make it for me.  Then, of course, there’s the energy of love that my Grandma put into it while she sewed. The postman who delivered it expended energy too as he drove from the post office, down the tree-lined streets of Stevens Drive, to get it to me a few days before Christmas.  You get the point.

Surrounding Yourself with Shit

I’m guessing that 99% of hoarders (or even those folks who just collect a whole lot of shit) have money issues as well, and I’m almost 100% positive that many of these people don’t surround themselves with only things that they love.  Rather, many of them surround themselves, simply, with things; an empty plastic Dr. Pepper bottle, a string cheese wrapper, a sack full of things they picked up from Wal-Mart that they just had to have but have never taken out of the bag.  That, my friends, is NOT honoring your material possessions. I understand that hoarding is an illness and my heart goes out to those struggling with this issue. But, whether you’re a hoarder or not, I imagine that we all hold on to things we don’t love, even after we’ve douched our own personal space.

So… what’s to be done?  How do we reconcile some of these age-old money issues?  How do you figure out how to expend your energy, how to value your energy, and how much to charge for your energy? The first step, I think, is simply to realize that your time, money, possessions, you, yourself, everything is energy.  That’s all I’m asking, even of myself, is to take that first baby step towards not being a dummy.

Melanie Bates

Femme Tales – Truth with Humor

Reprinted with permission from OwningPink.com | © Copyright Owning Pink

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