Check out Alana’s interview below.
What do you do (entrepreneur, career, etc.) and why is it important?
I am a full-time graduate student studying Social Work but I am also a blogger and owner of my own thrift/vintage store. I am pro-education (formal and informal). I worked in college access a few years prior to going back to school and truly value education if used in the right way. Blogging (writing) has been a passion of mind and I like having a place to put my random thoughts and learning that I am not the only one who thinks that way. My thrift/vintage store, Mae’s Closet, is in honor of my late grandmother, Willie Mae Randolph. I love thrifting but the idea for the store (outside of supplemental income) was to keep her spirit close to me after her passing. She was a true fashionista.
Can you please share a story/testimonial about when you didn’t think that you would make it, but yet you still overcame that adversity?
I vividly remember crying when I was 8 months pregnant at 19 years old and holding my belly telling my unborn daughter that I was sorry for bringing her into this world so selfishly. I was going through a very messy (immature) break up with her father and I was extremely hurt. I wouldn’t wish that kind of hurt on my worst enemy. Her father no longer wanted me, and I no longer wanted my daughter. I would wake up hoping to see blood in my underwear from a miscarriage or I would think about how I could fall down the stairs without truly injuring myself but lose the baby. Horrid thoughts. My daughter will be seven this year. Happy, hyper, and healthy. I graduated with my Bachelor’s degree with my peers and I will be graduating with my Masters in 9 months. Needless to say, God has always been a keeper and still is.
What would you tell your younger self that would have been instrumental during your journey?
(1) This too shall pass (and truly understand that statement. It is very cliché but it has a deep meaning) and (2) this is necessary to go through.
How can single moms be great moms and still pursue their dreams and goals?
The problem is, society tries to make mothers choose. For the most part, this is not an if/or situation. My daughter is a great motivator to pursue my dreams and goals. The fact that I have such an impressionable set of eyes watching my every move and reaction keeps me on my toes. She knows her mommy is a boss who loves God and I am teaching her to do the same
What does the word “phenomenal” mean to you?
Above average, one of a kind, unique, and top tier.
What is your best advice for moms?
Recognize God is the Heavenly Father. Let that resonate. I’d be the first to say that single parenting sucks. It’s not a preference of mine but the cards that were dealt. My Heavenly Father is nothing short of a provider. From a roof over my head, food, all the way to internal peace. He is a better parent than you could ever ask for in the man that helped bring that child into the world. Say it. Believe it.
What is one key money or budgeting principle that you live your life by?
I’m not too good with budgeting, lol, but one thing that has helped is when I created two different checking accounts: one for discretionary spending and one for bills. That way, if I ever get too happy with swiping my card on frivolous things, I know that my bill account hasn’t been touched and all of my necessities have been paid for. My bill account doesn’t have a debit card either.
Who do you look up to and why?
My grandmother graduated with her Associates Degree at the age of 51, after having been married for 30 years and seven children. I didn’t know this until after she passed away.
How do you stay aligned with your passion/purpose?
I’m a woman who moves by conviction. I can tell when I’m “doing too much” or putting things on my plate that God hasn’t told me to do. It’s not a pleasant feeling and although I don’t always listen, it is a good indicator of what things to let go and what things to keep doing. That and the constant prayer to have my passions align with God’s will for my life.
What is the single best piece of advice that you have learned?
You can’t make anyone do anything they don’t want to do. Quit losing sleep over things (people) you can’t control and only do what is in your power to do. If they come around, so be it. If they don’t, so be it.
Leave a comment in the Phenomenal Moms Facebook Group to let me know how this helps you!
Aisha Taylor is a single mom of twins, personal financial coach, work from home entrepreneur, and #1 Amazon Best Selling Author of the book “5+5 FNPhenomenal Ways to Save $100 This Week Without Killing Your Lifestyle.” Aisha has been featured in ESSENCE, Jet Magazine, and Black Enterprise. She is also the Founder of FNPhenomenal (Frugal –n- Phenomenal), a movement designed to help single moms transform their finances, enjoy life, and stop living from paycheck-to-paycheck. It’s time for you to be Financially Phenomenal!