tumblr_mh666j8NFI1qdgauwo1_500It’s been just over a year since I took a leap and quit my clock in and clock out job. I worked there for over five years and the work was becoming less and less satisfying. My hours were continuing to get cut, the work I was handed was intended for the brainless and those who just wanted to skim by to get a paycheck, and my confidence was dwindling by the second. I missed trying to come up with something amazing instead of something just to get the job done. My creative soul was being extinguished and it hurt bad!

I can remember moving here from Los Angeles to be with the man who is now my husband. In LA, I had a two hour commute there and two hours back. I worked as a graphic designer, creating hangtags, labels, and other little tidbits that you find on clothing. It was a blast working long hours, putting together over the top presentations to wow the customers, and to see the Los Angeles skyline glimmer in the sunrise as I took that turn off the 10 freeway. It was exciting and I felt that I had made it, but I needed to follow a different part of my heart. So, I moved here.

First couple of days of being here I landed a job as a graphic designer for a man who ran a small local coupon book. It was good for about a week until I had someone over my shoulder every time my hands hit the keyboard. Designing for the coupon book was fine, but then I started designing for his new printing company, car magazines, and the list goes on, all while he was over my shoulder. The paycheck was what kept me there, until six month later I asked for a raise and got the response, “You will get a raise when you can read my mind.” I left that moment and called my boyfriend balling. I had no back up plan.

Every day I checked to see if jobs were posted online and each one I contacted. One interview I went to, I was told that there was going to be some manual labor and I was actually excited about that! Putting together signage that you designed seemed like an awesome job. But, I was told, “Well, you’re a pretty girl and we don’t know if you can do that”.  Another interview came months later and I was told, “I don’t look like a typical designer”.

Finally the job I stayed 5 years at came along. I was beyond excited to work at a print shop and learn the ins and outs of printing. I worked so hard, coming up with ideas every week, but was shot down. I didn’t let it get me down, and I continued working 150%. In June of 2009, I got married, went on a honeymoon, and came back to a job that had cut my hours. I received one raise 9 months from when I started working there, and my hours were continuing to get cut back. The work was not challenging, the environment was toxic, and my fire was going out. Freelance graphic design work was coming in sporadically, and it was always fun. I just felt that it wasn’t enough for me to continue to pay the bills.

The search had started again for a job, while working for the print shop. I went to a job interview and was asked more questions about what my husband did than about my qualifications. Unless, you would count one of my qualifications as not having kids, because “kids get sick and then you have to take time off”. Several months later I went to another job interview and didn’t get the job because I had too much experience, so they hired a kid straight out of college.

It wasn’t until one night I woke up next to my bedroom door screaming at the top of my lungs. My heart was pounding, I felt like I was going to pass out, and I was terrified. I felt completely cornered, depressed, and hopeless. My health, mentally and physically, was hurting and I was in a very bad place. What was I going to do? I decided I was the only person in charge of my life so the next day I quit my job.

Now, I own my graphic design business and I am happy. No, I am not rolling in dough by any means, but I do have electricity and food, a wonderful relationship, and creative ideas flowing. There is still so much for me to learn and I am scared but more excited. The biggest hurdle for me is to continue to believe in myself and to grow that confidence back to where it used to be. Thanks to the wonderful support I have, I am able to do what I love.

Sending happiness out to everyone!

Jenny

Motivating the Mundane Monday

Oh my oh my….it’s been quite a while. I feel horrible for not posting in such a long time, but life has been happening, and it is happening in a good way. Let’s change this Mundane Monday into a Motivating Monday, shall we?

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It’s Not That Serious!

Change Your View On Things

Change Your View On Things

These days there are so many ways to get motivation that sometimes you can’t help but wonder, “Do these motivators know what they are talking about?” I for one, am not an expert on motivating people. I am not a life coach, a therapist, or everyone’s best friend…I am just me, who in turn, is just like you. 🙂 There are those days where I am frantically searching for “that quote”. You know, the one with the pretty type and the inspiring image in the background that is supposed to give you that “ah-ha!” moment. I am a sucker for those quotes because they are a quick fix, but at the end of the day, can I really even remember what it said? Even after saying all of this, I am going to continue to post quotes, images, stories and other motivation mementos for those who follow Polka Dot Tango. Why? Because everyone is motivated differently and I hope that someday, a little Motivational Monday post will give someone even a glimpse of inspiration! So this Motivational Monday, I am writing a simple list as to what gets me inspired, happy and motivated!

Just wear it!

Just Wear It!

Wear Something Different

If I am feeling like I am in a rut, I try and wear something different. It could be a mix of old clothes you already have that could make a completely awesome outfit! Maybe there’s a piece of clothing you bought and have never worn. Been there done that! Wear it and feel good about it. I often find that I save clothes for a special occasion, but it’s not like I have a plethora of ball gowns in my closet (or even one), so why not wear something that you have been saving. I like to try and remind myself that each day is special and you should dress for you! Not only will you see the difference, but amazingly so will others. You will glow on the inside and out!

I Work Out!

I Work Out!

Move Your Body

Just move your body. This is the old stand by trick that works for most everyone to get a little motivation running through your veins. If you already “move your body”, then try moving your body in a different way. If you are usually lifting weights, try and go for a hike. Changing up your workout can be a challenge, but in the end, it proves to yourself that you can do more than you thought and it feels good!

Get Out!

Get Out!

Mix Up Your Surroundings

Just this weekend, I went to the Los Angeles Farmer’s Market with my family. It was like a detox/workout/massage for my brain and I LOVED IT! Being around new aromas, people, clothing, colors, foods was totally what I needed for some motivation for starting a business. Being immersed in a different scene can be exhausting, but your brain is taking in new information and it’s most likely waking up. The Farmer’s Market made me smile from ear to ear the entire time I was there, motivating me to push myself harder than I ever have before! Thank you LA, once again!

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Pop Open A Can of Creativity

Be Creative

This may seem like a daunting task to a lot of readers, but it is a relaxing and fun way (for me at least) to get motivated. You don’t have to be Warhol or Martha Stewart to be creative, so take it easy on yourself. Just doodle if that’s what it takes. Having fun and creating things is very inspiring and the great part is that everyone can do it. Once you’re done, you can either laugh and throw it in the trash or be proud and display your work!

Let Polka Dot Tango know what motivates and inspires you! We would love to hear all about it!!!

 

 

 

Watch the Sunrise or Sunset!!!

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Reflect on your day by watching the sunset.

This Things to do Thursday, why not make an effort to take some time out of your day and simply watch the sunset. I would say watch the sunrise, but you will have to wait until tomorrow for that. Watching the sunrise and sunset always leaves me feeling a sense of calm but excitement. Each resemble a new beginning and an end, which either one can be refreshing depending on the kind of day you had. What’s also great about sunrise and sunset is that EVERYONE can watch them. You can walk out your front door and view its beauty.

Every blue moon I catch the sunrise, I kick myself in the butt because I can’t stand the fact that I don’t take the time to see that many of them. They are so serene and completely different than a sunset. As the sun comes up I feel like I am ultimately taking the day in my hands from the very beginning and not taking advantage of it. It is empowering to see the day unfold right before my eyes.

To give you some reasons to catch the sunset this evening, or many other evenings from now, I have collected some personal photos of mine. Enjoy and let Polka Dot Tango know if you are going to try and catch the sunrise tomorrow!

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OMG…it’s 2013.

OMG...it's 2013

OMG…it’s 2013

2012 is gone and it’s time to move on. Obviously, I can not speak for everyone, but 2013 seems like it’s going to be a fabulous year! When I look back on last year, I can’t help but think of the tragedies and disasters that occurred, and how they affected the entire world. Fortunately, for many,  there were glimmers of success,  joyous occasions, and just plain old good days that helped to keep the world turning on a positive note. Here is what Maya Angelou had to say about last year and moving on to this year:

“In 2012 nature and the mad nature of some human beings caused us to wonder how can we go on. From super storm Sandy to the Colorado movie house shooting and the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School, we have been pressed to find some answers to the question, why, me why us, why now? As we come into 2013, we bring with us the need to find answers and the hope to find what can we do to prevent the recurrence of these despairing occurrences. I think we must commit to a commitment to all human beings and a decision to accept our responsibility to nature’s outpouring and human misbehavior. I wish that we could say with Horace Mann that each of us should be “ashamed to die until you have won some victory for mankind.” I think we must surrender the despair of unexpected cruelty and extend the wonder of unexpected kindnesses to ourselves and to each other. 2013 can bring us the chance to be kind to each other and kind to ourselves. We deserve each other and each others generosity.”

This year, let’s be light on our hearts and give out smiles like they are on the brink of extinction!! It’s not Monday, but let’s get some new year motivation going anyway!!!!

 

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This is a good one.

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A Cup of Motivation For You!

Good morning everyone and happy Monday!!! Lately, life has been a little hectic and unfortunately Polka Dot Tango has been neglected. Anywho, here is a little motivation for you this Monday and I hope that your week involves something fantastic! Whether it is getting one more thing crossed off your list, you receive an amazing compliment, or you do something totally awesome for yourself that you have wanted to do in a long time. Let us know what your plans are for this week and what type of motivation gets you to keep going. Have fun! 🙂

 

 

Go Team!!!!

Spain’s team of Rhythmic Gymnasts

With the Olympics happening right now, how can you not be inspired! There is so much talent in this world and it’s so exciting to see it all in one place. I could say that I am completely all about Team USA, but with all of the hard work that all of these athletes have put in, I believe everyone deserves a huge round of applause and recognition. So, GO TEAM!!!!!

Scroll down to see amazing photos of some of the Olympics great women athletes, courtesy of Yahoo.com.

Dana Vollmer

Aly Raisman

Brittney Reese

Eleni Andriola

 

 

Missy Franklin

Gabrielle Douglas

Hope Solo

Allyson Felix

Djamila Rakhmatova

Lolo Jones

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FREEEEE iPhone Wallpaperrrrrrrrr!

Yaaaaay! It’s Monday and because we always like to start Monday off with a bang, Polka Dot Tango is giving you 2 FREE iPhone Wallpapers! Both wallpapers have two simple messages on them, such as “Be Yourself” and “Chase Your Dreams”. Nothing like a little pick me up every time you look at your phone! We hope that you enjoy this little gift as well as the quirky little image above that you can save for your desktop if you wanted to as well. To do so, right click on the image, select save as and there you have it.  Have a happy Monday and get ready for a fantastic week! 🙂

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Smile! It’s Monday!!

This Monday, we at Polka Dot Tango, want to know, what makes you smile? A smile can be the most motivating act at some of the hardest times and let’s face it…Monday’s can be tough. So enjoy this little list that’s been put together and hopefully if brings a smile to your face!


“And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.”
– Roald Dahl

Roald Dahl books have always made me smile. He was the author who ultimately ruled my book shelves with an iron fist. Growing up I gave away all of my books, but his. I should probably give him credit for helping to create this vivid imagination I carry with me. Just the thought of “The Witches” or “The Twits” make me want to get up in that attic and read every book of his all over again.

“Boooooooooop, Boooooooooop. Do you know what that sound is? That’s the sound of the ambulance coming to take me away cause the sight of you stopped my heart.”

A Night at the Roxbury is my number one movie. Yes, it has probably the most horrible reviews and yes a lot of people change their opinion of me when they hear it’s my favorite. I can’t help that I fall in love with these two characters who have a very passionate dream and in the end, they actually achieve it. This movie has some great morals: don’t be with someone who doesn’t make you happy, keep going after your goals, have fun, and stay true to your dance moves!

Be grateful, Juan Pablo. Today is especially delicious.

I. LOVE. NACHOS. Nachos can pretty much be made out of anything so they can suit any type of mood you are in. My husband doesn’t realize that I could eat nachos everyday for dinner, but I can. One of my goals is to actually come out with a recipe book on how to make many different types of nachos so that everyone can enjoy them!

Vintage Prints are what I look for in yard sales. Everything from the smell, to the type of paper being used, or the method of printing.  I recently found a pair of two ads for a printing company dated back in the early 1900’s which are of course a wonderful addition to my office! If you ever find some pieces, let me know! 😉

Tell us what makes you smile and we can post it on next Monday’s blog!

FREE Yourself!

Free Yourself!!!!

This Things To Do Thursday is to Free Yourself! I don’t mean by taking off your bra, but if you are into that…More Power To You :)! The meaning I have behind this is to let your mind and inhibitions go for just a while. You don’t have to run out and get a tattoo or quit your day job, but to do just one thing just one day a week that makes you feel completely free. I am sure many people have so many different meanings of what this means. For me it can mean taking some time to doodle anything without having a plan or wearing that one article of clothing that has been hanging in your closet because it’s for a “special occasion” or you’re not sure if you can “pull it off”. All Polka Dot Tango is asking One Hour, One Day A Week. Below is a list of some simple ideas that may help you out with this task and I hope it helps or conjures up new ideas of your own!

Doodle with absolutely no idea what the final piece is going to look like.

Grab that article of clothing you have been dying to wear the last month or year and wear it! To work, to dinner, to bowling, wherever works.

Think of nothing. Really, nothing at all. Close your eyes, listen to what’s around you and your breathing, and don’t rush yourself.

Blow bubbles. I keep a bottle of bubbles in my car. True story.

Sing really really loud. Cracks, loss of voice, off key are all highly recommended if you are not blessed with the voice of an angel.

Say what’s on your mind knowing it will not kill you. It works miracles and you will get the greatest facial expressions back.

If you walk or run, do a cartwheel. If you don’t know how to do a cartwheel, throw up some rock on hand signs just because you’re awesome.

If you see a pretty flower, pick it and wear it in your hair.

Dance all the time.

Accept yourself and those around you. Do it peacefully and graciously.

These are just my ideas and of course everyone is different. I hope that this inspires you and let Polka Dot Tango know what you did to Free Yourself!