SmittenKiss LLC

Lauren Vang

We offer and easy alternative to the complexity and expense of planning your next event

Charles Stolar

Dream Events specializes in creating one of a kind events that leave guests breathless

Jessica Repas

When it comes to event design I specialize in creating a one of kind experience.



During this time of great uncertainty, I know one thing, we are not alone. As I sit down to write this, I am reminded of a quote “Once you choose hope, anything’s possible.” – Christopher Reeve 

Like the rest of our world, we have experienced tremendous disruption in our business and every day lives. Most days, I stay in the green zone with much grounding and meditation, but with the wave of emotional absorption these past few weeks, finding stable ground has been challenging, to say the least.

As a business owner, mentor, event planner, and a mother, I’m expected to plan, support, mitigate, and keep the calm in all furious environments. And this my friends, is no different. We are dealing with unchartered territory, and with the ever-changing policies guiding our work and lives, we find zero clarity to our landscape. It’s disheartening, I know. Even though times are wavering, it is still quite possible to come out of this rather unscathed. Ok- so maybe the word “unscathed” is a bit ambitious. Scratch “unscathed” then. For a lot of us, it’s a joke to think we can come out of this alive and well. But hear me out.

While some may be unaware, many will come to find how important their AQ is. What is AQ you ask? It’s the “Adaptability Quotient”, in which experts have termed as a metric to measure one’s performance, which is simply their ability to adapt. Corporate businesses will use AQ to course correct in order to stay relevant. The rest of us should be using it to survive. You may have heard of the saying “Adapt or die.” Most folks should be familiar with IQ (Intelligence Quotient) and more recently, EQ (Emotional Intelligence) which is believed to be fundamental to great leadership. But now more than ever, one’s AQ will be vital in navigating through the COVID-19 global crisis.

About year ago, I wrote a blog on how to lead a productive life as a parentprenuer and I’m finding that many of those tips still apply today in our current conditions. This is quite possibly why California’s Shelter In Place policy didn’t affect my day to-day as it would have had I still worked in corporate. Working parents are now expected to juggle home schooling, prepare daily meals, produce the same results through virtual meetings, the list goes on. I’d expect to see some marriages may strengthen or fail, depending on the unbuckling of the pressure. Either the outcome, much discovery will come to light, and the journey will take its course. Yes, grocery shopping is different. Yes, I miss hugging my loved ones. But know that all of it will soon return. Here are 5 things I do to keep the humdrum of my day in mostly working order during this newly adopted #lockdownlife and #coronavirusoutbreak

MAKE YOUR BED & GET YOURSELF READY If you already make your bed every morning, bravo! It’s been said that if you make your bed daily, it’s the first accomplished task of your day, which sets you up for more accomplishments- big or small.  I know how easy it is to roll out of bed and just go about your day. The first few days seemed pretty cool–it’s almost liberating. But seriously stop. That’s a very dangerous slippery slope. When you do this, you tend to allow your day to melt into the nights. It’s hard enough to not be able to socialize in person, now you are confined to your home. I am not saying to get suited up, but dress and groom yourself as if you were leaving your home. Look presentable. When you look good, you feel good. I am certain your significant other and family would appreciate it too.

WAKE UP EARLIER THAN THE REST OF YOUR FAMILY BY A COUPLE OF HOURS I posted a while ago the justification on why I woke up at 4:30 am every morning. It was the time when I was able to think clearly without the rest of my world disrupting me. Do you have to choose the 4:30 am time frame? No. But I would recommend at least a couple of hours before your children are up. If you don’t have kids, then wake up before the first email hits your inbox.  The frontal cortex of you brain controls of some of the highest aspects of language and cognitive performance. This is where you strategize, make decisions and figure out how to multi-task. So immediately when I wake up, I fire up my leafy green shake, exercise and then I am motivated to shoot out my greatest work during that time. My frontal cortex is operating at its fullest during the wee morning hours. Why wake up when the rest of the world is chaotic? Start your day calm and in control. You will carry that same tone throughout your day.

STAY OFF OF SOCIAL MEDIA AND THINK TWICE BEFORE HITTING THAT SHARE BUTTON I deleted the Facebook App from my phone. When the first news of the outbreak took over my feeds, I found myself in an almost obsessed-like state. I wanted to know exactly what was happening. I thought it was important to be dialed in. But the more I was checking, the more I felt myself being pulled into a state of fear– of anger even. Suddenly, everyone became experts on infectious diseases, and held PHD’s in Political Science, then blamed the political landscape and poor social, economic and medical infrastructure of our nation. Fact is, criticism on our infrastructure and how unprepared we were for this outbreak held its weight, but I am not here to debate that. I consider myself an optimist and usually grounded by logical and thoughtful reasoning. With the spread of misinformation, constant data sharing, and deleterious reviews, I had to pull away. I still check in almost every day, but it’s not a mindless tap of the blue and white icon and endless scrolling. I am very much dialed in, but only to the things that affect me directly. Things I can control and carefully act on. This has nothing to do with lacking compassion. It has all to do with self-care. Stay informed with anything that correlates to your community, your family and your financial state. Everything else needs to be filtered.

FOCUS ON PRODUCTION: PRODUCING CONTENT. PRODUCING IDEAS. PRODUCING POSITIVITY. Immediately following our government lockdown mandates, I had to assess in record timing (I am talking 24 hours) how to switch my business to produce revenue online. I allowed the first week to be focused on managing the emotional flow from client and event cancellations. The second week we were assessing risks, updating our contracts, and changed how we would be delivering our trainings. In general, everyone should be easing themselves into a new schedule and allowing the first week of chaos to become the talk of the past. Restaurants have switched to online deliveries. Some have decided to contribute to our first responders, frontline workers and homeless shelters (God bless you people!) Some folks have decided to shut up shop and focus on other ways to keep themselves afloat, and care for their families. Couples should be dividing up tasks with the household and responsibilities to their children, allowing each other to have their fair share of uninterrupted work. Now is the time to work on yourselves. Work on producing and staying relevant in today’s markets. Whatever industry you are in, there are avenues to improve yourself and your business. FOCUS ON PRODUCING, I don’t care what. If it’s gardening, then produce plants. If it’s picking up a new hobby, then produce a new talent. JUST DON’T STOP.

STAY CONNECTED TO THOSE YOU LOVE AND CARE ABOUT It’s sad to me that it takes a dramatic crisis like this to remind you how quickly your lives can change. It didn’t matter if you were black, white, purple or blue. It didn’t matter if you were a millionaire, of royalty, middle class or poor, right wing or left. This virus does not discriminate. It killed; it will continue to kill and viciously impact our global economy and our lives. But for once, in some varying degree, we can empathize each other’s pain and loss in real time. Look, I get it, sipping on a strawberry daiquiri in your second vacation home and calling that a lock-down is far from suffering like those stuck in poor conditions and experiencing mass migrations like India. But what I am trying to convey is that we are witnessing a global crisis that will end up changing and shaping our whole world and society permanently. I may not have the metrics to share ( not yet) but in the end, this only proves how insanely human we are. So reach out to your neighbors, your family, those you care about- they have been affected in some shape or form. Understanding your losses and allowing yourselves to grieve is what truly makes you human and whole. But during times of hopelessness you can fulfill that void with helpfulness, with kindness, with love.

While we weather this storm, know that you are not alone. I ask that we all stay kind to one another and support each other. Find options and solutions rather than be rigid and difficult. Learn to adapt quickly and you will surely make it out of this more resilient than when you started. We all have been impacted tremendously. I pray that you are graced with peace during this time of adversity.

Be vigilant. Be hopeful. Be kind. 


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