Wealth in Wellness Archives - Candice Motley |
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This year for Thanksgiving my family and I decided to do something a little different. This is the second year that my family is in a co-parenting space. Last year was the first holiday season since my kids’ dad and I split and it wasn’t the easiest. This year we have a little bit of footing and know where we’re going. I really wanted to do something that was inclusive of everyone—my whole family AND his whole family. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out for his family to join us, but it still felt amazing to be able to bring my immediate family (my mom, sister, and my two littles) out of town with me.

We decided to go to Massanutten Resort in the mountains of Virginia almost 5 hours away. I wanted us to go out of town so that no one had to cook and everyone could just relax. My mom has always been the one to spend the entire day before and the whole day of Thanksgiving cooking so that she barely gets to enjoy the meal herself. It was so cool to be able to treat her and allow her to actually enjoy the holiday.

We drove up the morning of Thanksgiving and got there just in time for their amazing Thanksgiving feast. The resort was beautiful and everything for the Thanksgiving meal was already set up when we got there. The food was delicious… my favorites were the cranberry encrusted salmon and the marshmallow sweet potatoes.

The best part about being in the mountains with crappy WiFi is that it forces you to connect with those around you. I got to spend time with my kids doing all kinds of fun things from ice skating to pony rides to karaoke to board games. I also got to talk to my mom for more than just 20 minutes. Typically when I see her it’s because she’s coming over to watch my kids so I’m rushing out the door. It’s rare that we are all purposely and intentionally sitting down together. I also got to connect with my sister and find out what she has going on. It was so nice to be able to spend real, quality time with each of them.

My biggest takeaway from the entire experience is that I want to spend more time just like that. I’m already planning to incorporate it into my 2020. I want to spend more time with my family and my kids actually going somewhere, doing something, connecting, and being intentional. Truly experiencing things together as a family.

I’m a big advocate of work/life balance and try to maintain that as much as possible for a business owner. I have always been a proponent of having holiday time spent with family where you do not have to worry about work. For the last 4 years my studio has had a 5 day spread where my employees had time off. We come in and work the Monday before Thanksgiving so we can have that full time to connect with family and friends. This has become a tradition that my whole team really looks forward to.

I am so thankful to have had such a wonderful holiday and am looking forward to how I can incorporate more intentional quality time with my family and kids in the new year.

A couple of months ago, I launched a YouTube channel called Garnish Your Growth. I’ve shared this with you before, but today I wanted to share something I’ve learned since starting the channel, and how I’m revamping it to be even more authentic.

When I decided to start a YouTube, I knew I wanted to make a channel that spoke to creatives of any kind. Creatives in general have a different mind and different struggles. I wanted to shed some light on things from my perspective, through both my own experiences and those of my lead stylist, Niko.

I’ve experienced an immense amount of growth in the last 5 years since launching my own business and becoming an entrepreneur of a brick and mortar space. I’ve learned so much and wanted to have a channel that was both devoted to growth and helps stimulate thoughts about growth. Growth is great, but sometimes it really sucks; sometimes it will bring you to tears; and sometimes it makes you feel like you’re completely failing.

I really liked the content we were giving, but I noticed when the episodes were put out that while they were very open, honest, and transparent, they were also very curated. I looked at my own content and realized I had left a big chunk of a story out because I knew it would bring me to tears or I didn’t go into something because it would open up a portal to something else that wouldn’t fit in the set timeframe. It didn’t sit well with me that I told a story, but kept some of the information to myself.

I wanted to be more real, open, honest, and vulnerable. We learn and grow from other people telling their truth. And believe me, it’s hard to tell the unadulterated truth of something you’ve failed at. But I knew if I was going to put out the content of my growth, I wanted to give you real life scenarios and ultimately do a better job in telling my story.

This means starting from the beginning. If you’re just finding the channel, you don’t know who I am or what my story looks like or why this is so important or how it saved my life. So I decided to switched up the style of the video and amount of content I have. It’s less about specific topics and more about real, honest conversations.

So we are unofficially relaunching Garnish Your Growth with this week’s episode. You can expect it to be more real, raw, and less edited. We’ll be sharing more of who we each are and why we wanted to pour ourselves into this to begin with.

Below I’ve included a preview video for what you can come to expect from this channel in the future. I hope you’ll join me in this important conversation as we normalize the challenges of growth and share the relatable ups and downs of our journeys.

This blog post is more of a message of gratitude.

I wanted to share with you all exactly why I feel like I truly have the best job in the world. When I first joined the hair industry at 18 I chose it because I’m very creative, love the beauty industry, and love being around people. That was all I really knew about the career I was choosing. Now that I’m 36 and have been in this career for nearly 20 years, I feel so much stronger about what I do passionwise than ever before.

Garnish Hair Extensions

Being inside this industry for so long I have watched it grow so much and my career has evolved rigth alongside it. On a daily basis I get to talk to such dope ass women. A lot of women that come in to my studio are part of our tribe because we connect on more things than just their hair.

Because I specialize in extensions, the guests I see are in the studio longer than they would be for just a cut and color, which allows us to connect on a deeper level. Every single day I come home having had the best conversations, and having met the most interesting people. Not only do I have amazing clients whom I love, I also work with a bomb team that I pretty much handpicked that choose every day to be there.

Garnish Hair Extensions

I have been doing the same thing for nearly 20 years, but I have not had the same feeling about it the entire time. I believe you can fall in and out of love with a career just like anything else in life. Around the 8-10 year mark I felt stale and stagnant—stuck in my current salon space feeling complacent and scared to leave.

The clients coming in were not my people, and the services I was doing were not what I was most passionate about. Almost 10 years later, every single person who walks into my studio has chosen me to connect with and to invest into themselves with. I have worked my ass off to offer something in a niche specialty that boost womens’ confidence and helps them feel better. I am the person that gets to give women that mindblowing-holy shit-never felt better transformation that they are craving.

Garnish Hair Extensions

Overall I just feel so fulfilled and in alignment with what I’m supposed to be doing. I didn’t know this was my path starting out, but once I saw it years ago, I’ve been working my ass off to get to this place. I feel really grateful and really fortunate to have found it at a young age and have been able to make it come into fruition. And to find like minded people to work inside my studio and help me bring this vision home and keep it growing is just an added bonus.

To anyone who has ever offered encouragement, given blessings, or offered support–thank you. I feel extremely lucky and blessed to have this as my career path. I’ve truly never been happier inside of my career than I am now.

It’s official—I have a kindergartner.

This is my first year with a child in the Wake County school system. For the last 4 and a half years I’ve been inside daycare, live-in nannies, childcare, grandmas, etc. The first year sending your child to school is very different. But I can honestly say, from 2 months ago to now as I’m writing this, I’m so proud of Kingston. There have been some things that caught me off guard about kindergarten and I wanted to share them with you.

First of all, Kingston is going to school downtown at a charter school that is very different from your typical school. They focus a lot on interpersonal skills, leadership,  and on not just being aware of what’s going on in their own neighborhood, but also world issues. I’m used to A, B, Cs and learning to read, not putting together campaigns for water consumption and looking at global warming. Not only does Kingston work on his reading and writing, but he comes home talking about things that really matter. It’s really amazing to hear.

They also do a lot of affirmations and talk about goal setting and being a good human being. All things that you know I love. To hear these things coming out of my 5 year olds mouth kind of blew my mind. I didn’t expect that kindergarten would be like this at all. I’m really shocked and amazed to have him in a school that has such a different philosophy. I’m also super thankful and really excited that he was able to get in. I had no idea that Charter schools are set up on a lottery system. You have to apply, and are selected solely based on the lottery. Kingston originally didn’t get in, but a month and a half later we got the call that he had been accepted! It’s been really special to see him thriving and coming home with stories and meeting friends.

A perfect example of this is a conversation we shared recently. He said, “Mom I’m a big boy, I’m going to fill up Houston’s bucket.” And I asked him, “What do you mean?” He said, “Well, I want to fill her up with good things and love so that she can give that to the next person that she talks to.” Talk about an amazing thing to hear from your 5 year old!

With all of that goodness, there had to be at least one hiccup. For us, that’s the morning routine. So far it’s been a little bumpy—trying to get him downtown—there’s no transportation and no lunch so we’re having to pack everything and drop him off. The biggest battle is having Kingston going to one school and Houston going to another school.

Thankfully, my friend Amber just moved into my neighborhood. Since then she has been taking Kingston to school with her daughter because she goes to the same school. It’s been a huge blessing and I’m so grateful.

Kindergarten has certainly been a new experience, but a very rewarding one so far. If you have any specific questions about the school, feel free to reach out and I’ll give you the information.

Just about a year ago while attending one of the BMS Mastermind Conventions, I heard one of the other stylists say, “All of this is so great, but I’ve never done this shit before and I feel like it’s a case of new level, new devil.” My mind was blown and it’s stuck in my head ever since. I revisit this quote all the time when reflecting on my business and life, particularly whenever I face obstacles or adversity.

NBR Hair Extensions

NBR Hair Extensions

You would think 5 years into owning a brick and mortar space, 10 years as an entrepreneur, and almost 19 in the industry, that it would be easier than it is. I’ve done a lot of different things in that time, but I’ve never done some of what I’m doing right now. It’s stressful, but I’m compelled to keep going because I have a certain goal in mind. I’ve realized that as you get closer to your vision and goal, there’s a lot of shit you have to bust through, that you have to end, and that you have to have weird conversations about to move forward, but that’s exactly what that stylist was talking about. That’s the new devil.

The old devil is no longer tugging at you because you’ve pushed through that particular phase and now you’re onto something new. If you stay complacent, there’s still a devil you have to work with, whether it’s mediocrity or staying stagnant. For most of the people I’m around now, the idea of no growth or change seems like hell on Earth. But even though we would rather keep moving forward into new territory, it’s scary to face the new devils. At least with the old ones, you know what to expect. With uncharted territory, all the wins that you have are met with powerful adversity. There’s no playbook, and you’ve never done it before.

I’ve found that these new challenges are an addictive state of mind and place to be.

The new devil for me is that I keep on going and it never stops. I’m constantly asking myself, “Is it ever going to be good enough? Am I ever going to get to a place where I can settle it down a little bit?” I push myself past what I probably should be doing into what I feel called to do. I move very quickly, but it’s all pressure that I put on myself. My new level, new devil is branching out into unknown territory and how exciting and fulfilling that is.

It’s always just one more thing—let’s just keep stacking stuff on. So, as I share this with you all today—this is my reminder to check in with what I see in front of me and to make sure it’s what I want, and that if I need to slow down, I give myself permission to slow down and not put so much pressure on myself to do new new shit all the time. Maybe that new shit for me might be slowing down and falling back in love with some of the first things that I did.

What’s your new level, new devil? What are you currently struggling with in your business that you’ve never experienced before? I also encourage you, for the sake of perspective, to reflect on some of your old devils that you’ve already knocked out that don’t bother you anymore. It’s a cyclical process, but it’s always worth reminding ourselves how far we’ve come.

What’s up guys…

I am coming to you fresh and rejuvenated from my vacation last week in Puerto Vallarta. One of my best girlfriends was turning 40 and wanted to celebrate with people around her that she knows and loves. I got the call back in January that she wanted to travel abroad and have her amazing 40th in this beautiful space.. I’m so glad that I took her up on the invitation and dusted off my passport.

You don’t really know how much you need something, until you are sitting in it. I generally take an annual girls vacation, to reconnect and hang out with some of my best friends… But because of life situations in different scenarios on everybody’s plate, we weren’t able to schedule one this year. In my mind I thought “no big deal we’ll catch up next year”.. I was wondering how I was going to get away with two vacations anyway… My friends 40th, along with my annual.


By the time September came I could tell that I was ready to unplug, and recharge. Things in the studio have been going great, but the constant demand of being a business owner definitely stacks up and it’s always nice to have a release… Even from something that you would consider your passion.

This is also my first year inside of a co-parenting space with my kid’s father, and again, even though things are going well there are definitely highs and lows in trying to work through this new space for us. And let’s not forget the actual two children as well. Whether you are in a coparenting, single parent, or dual parent household… Being the parent of a child is a demand like no other I’ve ever experienced before.

As soon as my feet touched the beautiful sand, I knew that this was much needed. We stayed in an amazing villa with an incredible infinity pool view out into the ocean. The Villa came staffed and we were waited on pretty much hand and foot…
It sounds a little extra, until you actually get to experience it. Now I feel like I am spoiled for life😳

There were 14 of us who traveled across the country to go and celebrate and boyyyyyy, we did everything together… Went on a yacht exploration, broke bread together, and honestly just hung out and had lazy days together. I got to find out about everybody’s story, where they were from, and I feel like I have made some new friends for life.

Sometimes being in that close of quarters with people that you don’t know can be a little intimidating, I’m telling you right now to get over it! It could be one of the most amazing experiences of your life. Keep yourself open and meet new people in your adult life like you would when you were in elementary school. <—- hard to do, I know.

Here are some highlights from my trip and a villa information if you are interested…

For a five day vacation I only spent $480.. yes.. you heard right. The only other additional fee that we had to pay was for the actual food itself which only came to about $100 per person.

www.villasofdistinction.com

I’m refreshed, rejuvenated, and now on my way to California to train with in the BMS/NBR network… I’ll tell you all about it next week..

Hey Moms…

…we are having a virtual party over here on the blog today because guess what?? The kids are back in school! Can we all just agree that summertime as a mom is kind of a big giant hot mess? I remember as a kid how I absolutely could not wait for summer break and summer camps and no more school. But as a mom? I absolutely dread the end of the school year because it means an end to the routines that I love so much. Summer just doesn’t happen the same as a mom.

All summer long it’s running here and there, constant planning, trying to keep up with the ever changing needs of summer camp. There’s field trips and pool days and random Fridays off—honestly, why are there random Fridays off?? Summer camp just doesn’t have even half the routine that the school year does, which means I am all here for the school year beginning again.

It’s like a breath of fresh air. I don’t know if you all experience this, too, but I feel like as a mom I’m wound so tight during the Summer. It’s impossible to really relax when everything is so out of sync. Which is why I love returning to the familiarity and routine. It may bring more to the table like homework and such, but it really cools off and chills out all of the hot messiness that happens all summer.

And getting back to cool feels soo good. In fact, I’ve found that as the school year kicks off and moms start to catch their breath, it’s the perfect time for a little self-care and self-investment. I love every time a mom comes in to the salon at the end of the Summer just dying for some alone time and pampering and we’re able to give that to her.

If you’ve been following along on insta, you know I just changed things up with my own hairstyle. It felt like the perfect time as everything in life transitions back to school year steady. So fellow moms, as you settle back into your routine and start to cool off from the craze of Summer, give us a call. We’re ready and waiting to help you on your way back to feeling chill… as chill as mom life can ever be.

We all remember the days… when Summer was full of drinking, spontaneous fun, traveling, and just having a good time. It was all care-free and sunshine. Summer as a mom is a completely different story. Summer camp, lack of routine, no school—Summer is now all about regulation and responsibility.

First of all, in order to be prepared for Summer, you have to get started way back in January. Who knew you had to register for summer camp 6 months before the actual camp happens?? Deciding on camps, and how long they are in each camp, etc, it all takes a lot of coordination. Speaking of coordination… when the littles are out of school and work and travel doesn’t slow down, the co-parenting suddenly becomes way more complex. Communication, scheduling details, and flexibility all become super important. I’ve been traveling a lot for work lately, and it’s required a lot of adulting to make sure everything is situated and taken care of while I’m away.

Summer NBR Hair Extensions

Summer NBR Hair Extensions

Also a part of the summertime shuffle… can we have a moment for all of the meltdowns that come from being out of normal routine? Summer is full of getting ready earlier or later, going to bed earlier or later, camp being different from school, etc. The Summer schedule looks nothing like the school year schedule, and it brings a lot of emotions with it. Even as adults, having a routine is super important. It helps us maintain habits and just generally feel good. It works for the same for kids, and I know mine function best when we have a routine in place.

Adjusting to summer-as-a-mom, and a working, business-owning mom at that, can be a little overwhelming. So many shifts happen when you become a parent, and things never really stop shifting. Kingston is about to start kindergarten in a few weeks and I’m sure it will bring plenty of its own new adjustments and learning curves. Moms, I would love to hear from you. How do you manage the ups and downs of Summer? What do you do to stick to a routine throughout the summer months? Let me know in the comments below!

As you may know, last week was my birthday and I wanted to take a moment to share some of my reflections on turning 36. For a long time, every year for my birthday it was about going somewhere or doing something. Now I’ve reached a point in life where I choose to go nowhere and spend as much of the day relaxing as possible. I’m officially a Dream House Hermit. I absolutely love being in my space and I love inviting people into my space.

This year, my mom came over along with some friends and their kids and we all just had a good ass time. When it comes to my mom, well, I’m the apple that didn’t fall far—we love so much of the same things, the most important one for birthdays being creamy delicious alcoholic beverages. She made me drinks and kept things going all day
long.

NBR Hair Extensions

NBR Hair Extensions

What struck me the most about this particular day might seem like such a small thing, but to me it meant so much. We spent the entire afternoon at the pool. No big deal, right? Well, I have never lived in a community that had a pool that I could just go to. To me, it was amazing to just get to go sit out at the pool, relax, not stress about my kids because this pool also has a kiddie pool, and just be there.
Then there was the after-pool nap.

You know the kind. The soft nap where you’re not like totally asleep the whole time, but just completely chill. My mom took care of my littles to gift me with said soft nap and it. Was. Everything.

Overall, 36 feels pretty similar to 35, but I can feel that I’m approaching a different phase of my life. It’s become all about finding the quickest, simplest way to get to the end result.

And for the first time ever, I actually enjoy time off. I have always been so much of a workaholic that not only did I rarely take time off, when I did I could never relax and enjoy that time. I’m finally finding a work/life balance. Raise your drink of choice (mine is a mudslide) and let’s cheers to 36!

Today I wanted to bring you all a message that’s a little different from my usual.

You may or may not be aware that the month of May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Mental health has not always been something I put a lot of thought and effort into, but recently it’s been showing up for me with both myself and people I care about. I’ve been realizing just how challenging it can be, and how much effort it can really take to maintain a healthy mental state. As it has impacted my life, it has become very important to me to contribute to bringing awareness to the mental health struggle.

I wanted to bring in someone who is familiar with sharing her mental health experience to shine some light for you all on the importance of the conversation and some ways to manage your mental health. You may remember our former studio manager, Kassy. She shares about mental health and the reality of living with mental illness on her instagram (instagram.com/coffeewithkas), and I wanted to share her voice with you all.

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The thing about mental illness is that it sounds like such a scary word, but we all know and love someone living with it. And the reality is that more than half of those living with a mental illness are not being actively treated for it. Which means that so many of our family members, friends, and ourselves are all silently struggling through each day trying our best to self-manage in whatever ways we can.

The two most common mental illnesses are depression and anxiety, both of which can show up in different ways for different people. Particularly anxiety, which is a blanket term for a number of different disorders such as Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Seasonal Affective Disorder, and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, all of which look and feel entirely different. It’s important to remember this fact when talking to someone living with the disorder as it may look different than you expect, and it may feel different to them than it does for you, or it did for your mom, best friend, etc.

No one set of coping mechanisms will work well for everyone, and finding the right formula for your particular mental health can be an ongoing process of trial and error. For many people medication is a vital ingredient to the formula that works for them, but for many others medication is not even an option. What works for someone with depression may not work for someone suffering from PTSD, but here’s just a small sampling of ways to contribute positively to your mental health.

Exercise


This could even mean taking a five minute walk in the sunshine, getting up from your desk to stretch, or dancing around in the kitchen while you cook dinner. Of course, the more traditional “working out” such as going to the gym or yoga or swimming works, too, but just moving helps. If you ever saw Legally Blonde you know all about how exercise gives you endorphins and endorphins make you feel better. This is why it’s always one of the first recommendations for mental illness. THAT SAID, part of depression and anxiety can be chronic fatigue, and exercise isn’t always a possiblity. Do what you can, give yourself grace when you can’t, and know that even a little bit makes a difference.

Meditation & Breathing Exercises

As cliché as this may sound, proper breathing techniques REALLY do make all the difference in the world for when you’re experiencing the physical symptoms of anxiety. Meditation and mindfulness, which focus on being present in the moment and utilizing awareness of your body and surroundings, also help negate the effects of anxiety.

Support System

This is absolutely crucial to maintaining your mental health and coping with mental illness. Whether this is family, friends, really great coworkers, or a combination of, having people to lean on when you’re not feeling well can make all the difference. Whether it’s just calling someone on the phone, or texting if that feels like too much, or if you’re able, meeting up for a cup of coffee, spending time with people who care about you can be a really great way to help counteract the feeling of being entirely alone in your struggle.
There are tons of different coping mechanisms and resources available. I encourage you to seek out what works for you and continue trying different combinations until you figure out the best fit.

More than anything else, though, I want to talk about “the conversation.” When it comes to mental illness there are huge amounts of stigma surrounding it, and coupled with the fact that people experiencing it often feel alone, it can be incredibly difficult to reach out for help. This is why so many people suffer in silence. It’s also why I passionately believe in being open and honest about how you’re feeling, even when you feel like “no one wants to hear that.”

As a culture, we’ve become so obsessed with the idea of “positivity” that we’ve forgotten how to empathize and recognize that “positive thinking” doesn’t make the pain of mental illness just go away. Of course, mindset can make a huge difference, but it’s all about balance. I believe one of the most powerful things we can do to help people heal is to be open and honest about our own struggles. It’s when we see our pain mirrored by others that we feel validated and no longer so alone.

If you’re experiencing depression, anxiety, PTSD, or something you don’t know how to describe or label, I encourage you to reach out to someone close to you. A partner, friend, parent or sibling. If you have someone in your life that you know is experiencing mental illness, reach out to them. Send them a text or a card, take them out for coffee, let them know that even if they don’t want to talk about it or know what to say that they are not alone.

If you don’t understand or don’t know what to say back, that’s okay, too. Just letting them know you are there can make all the difference. And if you hear someone else say that they are struggling, instead of staying quiet because it’s easier, have the courage to stand up, and say, “Hey, me too.” It’s only when we all start to share our stories that we begin to recognize how much of our pain is shared, and how much healing we can find in one another.

C A N D I C E G R A M

Owner of @GarnishExtensionStudio | Transformations are my Specialty | Fashion is a hobby | Fun is a Necessity
So you need a revamp huh? Garnish Hair Extensions - Garnish Studio + Extension Bar