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Motivation

“A DIFFERENT WORLD” Aired 30 Years Ago & Changed My Life

A Different World changed my life. It was and still is my all time favorite sitcom. The Cosby Show was instrumental in my desire to go to college as well, but A Different World gave me a real glimpse of what college life was all about. 

I honestly believe I’ve seen every episode and when the re-runs come on, I will stop in my tracks and watch them. These characters were ones that I looked up to and wanted the best for. Although the college was fictional, I would have loved to attend Hillman. The closet thing to this experience was Clark or Spelman. I couldn’t afford either. I still ended up going to a HBCU (Alabama State University) because of A Different World. I wanted to pledge a sorority too, but that didn’t happen.

If I’m 100% honest, I even wanted a relationship like Dwayne and Whitley. I have so many favorite moments of this show, that’s hard to pick just one but here are a few:

  • When Dwayne stops Whitley’s wedding. OMG! I could watch that clip over and over! 
  • When Whitely first told Kim to “Relax, relate, release!” I still say that today.
  • My first introduction to Jada Pinkett-Smith. I loved her character. 
  • The moment Whitley realizes she loves Dwayne after he goes to another country and meets another woman. 

It’s hard to believe that the show aired 30 years ago! I often wonder if Denise’s character would have stayed on the show, how would it look different?

 

 

 

 

 

 

TV One will celebrate the 30th Anniversary of the premiere of “A Different World” with a 14-hour marathon on the same date the series launched, Sunday, September 24 at 10 a.m. ET

 The marathon will begin with the pilot episode, which still reigns as the highest rated television pilot in history, garnering 38.9 million viewers.
  
“After three decades, many of the show’s themes and messages of friendship, coming of age, responsibility and perseverance still ring true. We hope fans will join us as we take a moment to look back with fondness on this American television treasure.” says Dexter Cole, TV One SVP of Program Scheduling & Acquisitions
 
The marathon celebrating the fictional HBCU will run from 10 a.m. ET to 1 a.m. ET and will feature a selection of the most popular episodes, in chronological order, containing memorable moments from each season of the series.Interstitials from cast and crew captured recently reflecting on their experiences with the series will also be featured during the marathon. The pilot episode will be presented as a special “Pop Up Edition” filled with show trivia at 10 a.m. ET and again at 8:30 p.m. ET to commemorate the same time the pilot premiered 30 years ago.
 
PASADENA, CA - JULY 13: The cast of the television show "A Different World" speaks during the 2006 Summer Television Critics Association Press Tour for the Nick at Nite Network at the Ritz- Carlton Huntington Hotel on July 13, 2006 in Pasadena, California. (Photo Frederick M. Brown / Getty Images).

PASADENA, CA – JULY 13: The cast of the television show “A Different World” speaks during the 2006 Summer Television Critics Association Press Tour for the Nick at Nite Network at the Ritz- Carlton Huntington Hotel on July 13, 2006 in Pasadena, California. (Photo Frederick M. Brown / Getty Images).

 
A Different World premiered on NBC on September 24, 1987 as a spin-off of The Cosby Show. The series originally centered on free-spirited, rebellious Huxtable daughter, Denise (Lisa Bonet), as she attended her parent’s alma mater, Hillman College. During season one, Denise struggles through college and meets memorable friends along the way, including Maggie (Marisa Tomei), Jalessa (Dawnn Lewis), Dwayne (Kadeem Hardison), and Whitley (Jasmine Guy). Seasons two through six capture the essence of being young, black and educated in America by tackling political, ethical, racial, emotional and social issues far before the media was ready to address them.**
 
TV One viewers can also join the conversation by connecting via social media on TwitterInstagram and Facebook (@tvonetv) using the hash tag #ADifferentWorld.
 
Did you watch A Different World? What did you like about the show? What are you favorite memories?
Motivation

Introducing BernettaKnighten.ME

Domain.ME

This post was inspired and sponsored by Domain.ME, the provider of the personal domains that end in .ME. As a company, they aim to promote thought leadership to the tech world. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Over the course of the last year, I’ve worked with Domain.ME to create a space for me that houses everything I do.

Sometimes, I’ve honestly felt I was:

  1. All over the place
  2. Had too many things going on.

As time went on, I had to give myself a pep talk because I can’t beat myself down because I have so many of ideas. As a matter of fact, I am grateful that the ideas come to me and that I’ve been able to execute many of them. 

Domain.ME has allowed me to put all of my endeavors in one place. I introduce to you BernettaKnighten.Me (click)

Domain.ME

Why does it work?

In my industry, I attend a lot events. 

  • Blog conferences
  • Entrepreneur conferences
  • Summits
  • Business sessions & more

When you meet people, everyone wants to know what you do. Sometimes it’s hard actually to decide what to say, or how much to say. With my new hub, I can actually tell them about me but give them the link to BernettaKnighten.Me that gives more insight into each area. 

Screen Shot 2017-09-18 at 9.44.43 AMHub Benefits

One major way my Domain.ME hub benefits me is, that it has allowed me to be seen in more than one light. To many I’m just a blogger, and while I love the life that blogging has given me, I am more than a blogger. 

My hub introduces my audience to the other things that bring passion to my life outside of BernettaStyle.com. This hub gives the highlights of everything I do, and gives you a well rounded view of who I am.

  • The Knighten Project
  • Speaking engagements
  • My Dream Year Planner

Why would you want a hub? Who is a Hub perfect for?

  1. Do you have more than one website?
  2. Do you have more than one business?
  3. Do you have more than one passion?
  4. Are you tired of handing out 3-4 business cards?
  5. Do you want people to know eveyrthing you do, but don’t have all the time to explain it all?

A hub would be perfect for you. It will encompass all your endeavors in one place giving your prospects a total view of who you are and what you can bring to the table. If you have multiple interest, businesses, community involvement or personal projects, a HUB could showcase them all in a well-designed format.

Did you notice my new hub was a .ME and not a .com?

What is Domain.ME and why use a .ME address?

  • Domain.ME is a domain name provider that allows anyone (personal and/or business) to create a unique, safe identity online with a domain ending in .ME. They operate as a B2B, which means that people can register a domain name through one of 190 accredited registrars that operate as .ME resellers.
  • ME is not a website nor a website builder.
  • .ME is uniquely positioned to provide you with the space you need to build your personal brand and create a captivating online persona that’s a direct reflection of you. .ME domains are great for personal websites, such as blogs, online portfolios, or aliases for social network profiles.
  • .ME domain names are also very popular among the global startup scene for the many meanings .ME carries and the opportunity to get a short, highly-branded, and memorable domain name with a personal feel to it.
  • There are no restrictions on .ME domain name registrations, registration for these domain names is open to anyone, similar to .COM, .NET, or .ORG.
  • .MEs are not penalized when it comes to SEO. They have the same benefits as any .COM.

http://dot.me/onlinehub1

Here are some examples of personal branding online hubs:

What are you honest thoughts about my new hub? How would you use a personal hub?

Motivation

Multiple Dreams, One Location with Domain.Me

Domain.Me

I first started blogging in 2010. I had a blog called WIFE (Why Isn’t Forever Easy). It was mainly about marriage and the things they we deal with as married women. After 2 years, I really wanted to write about more things and felt boxed in. 

In 2012, I re-branded as BernettaStyle.com which allowed me to talk about a wide range of topics. Under the BernettaStyle umbrella, I am able to share motherhood stories, marriage highs and lows, motivate women to follow their dreams and review products that allow families to save money and time. 

Over the last 7 years of blogging, my family and I have experienced some amazing things because of my site:

and the list goes on . . .

Although, blogging has been fun over the last 7 years, in my heart I wanted to make more a difference. Within the last 2 years, I’ve been a tad bit busy.

  1. Created a non-profit. In 2015 I started The Knighten Project. We believe everyone deserves one dream come true. How does it work? Individuals submit a dream for themselves or someone else on our website, and through the donations from brands, sponsors or everyday donors we will strive to make these dreams come true. We’ve did three dreams so far. 
  2. My Dream Year Planner – Late 2016 I created a planner that will assist you in making a major dream come true in 365 days if you work for it. I love my planner because it’s more like a dateless workbook. You write goals and how you plan to map them out. There are guides included to help you along the way.
  3. Breakthrough Life Coaching – I was certified in May 2016 as a Life Coach. Since then I have worked with ladies to help them break out of their comfort zone and make major things happen in their lives and/or business. 

Do you see a theme? It’s Dreaming. 

Your dream could be anything in this world, I just believe you should try to make it happen. I hate the phrase, “Life is short”, but the truth is you only have so many days to make things happen. When you realize that, it’s time to put your actions in motion to make your dream(s) a reality.

For me, my dream is helping others make theirs come true … hence coaching, dream planner and the non-profit. 

One additional thing I am grateful for is Domain.ME, they’ve help me house all of my ambitions in one place. A hub. BernettaKnighten.ME.

If you’ve noticed above, I have 3 different websites for each thing. Domain.ME allowed me to have a one stop web space that allows people to get a glimpse of me and everything I’m involved in. 

Why use a .ME address and not a .com/net/org?

  • .ME is uniquely positioned to provide you with the space you need to build your personal brand and create a captivating online persona that’s a direct reflection of you.
  • .ME domains are great for personal websites, such as blogs, online portfolios, or aliases for social network profiles.
  • .ME domain names are also very popular among the global startup scene for the many meanings .ME carries and the opportunity to get a short, highly-branded, and memorable domain name with a personal feel to it.
  • There are no restrictions on .ME domain name registrations, registration for these domain names is open to anyone, similar to .COM, .NET, or .ORG.

Domain.Me

What inspired me?  

People. People and their stories inspired me. When I finished college, my first big job was with IBM. Although it was a great company with wonderful benefits, I quickly learned many of my co-workers didn’t like their job.

When I worked at Chase, it was the same experience. Many of the people I came in contact with desired to do other things but no one was doing it. When I would ask, when are you going to start doing XYZ, I often got a deer in headlights glare. 

I would then hear shortly afterwards about how our conversation inspired them to walk towards their dream. Initially I was just asking questions and wanted them think. As a grew as a woman, mother, wife, and dreamer – I started to see a trend with me and people.

I wanted to people to follow their dreams, and now that’s what I am always working on.

This post was inspired and sponsored by Domain.ME, the provider of the personal domains that end in .ME. As a company, they aim to promote thought leadership to the tech world. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Motivation

My 11Alive Debut on Morning Rush with Back-to-School Tips

The morning of July 31, 2017 the city of Atlanta started the 2017-2018 school year. Yes, it’s still summer. However, school is now in session. 

In addition to the new school year, 11Alive has a new morning show called Morning Rush with Shiba RussellCrash ClarkChesley McNeil #MorningRushATL. The show is right on time with the upcoming school year and all the hustle and bustle that comes with the morning rush, no pun intended.

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I feel so blessed, as I along with Arkeedah Mccormick, were invited as Top Mom & Fashion Bloggers to talk about tips, apps and more for the upcoming school year.

Check out my clip: 

The cool thing is that I was able to do this 3 times. We were in the studio from 5am-8am with our host/moderator Myra Sky. We did a LIVE news segment once per hour which gave the 11Alive viewers multiple times to catch our tips.

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Here are the cool apps and sites I shared this morning:

Smart School Hacks (images are attached below)
1. (website) Word Hippo – Find similar or opposite words 
2. (app) PhotoMath – Take a picture of a math problem & it will walk you through how to solve it.
3. (website) Scholar.Google.com – better website for school essays with more relevant information.
 
School Study Hacks
1. Writing something out is the equivalent of reading it 7 times.
2. Eating Chocolate while studying will help the brain retain information easily.
3. Peppermint stimulates the brain and helps with concentration.
4. You are more likely to remember something that you write in blue ink vs. black ink
5. After writing a paper, copy and paste it into Google Translate, and listen to it for mistakes
 
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I had so much fun working with Myra and Arkeedah today. I hope I am invited back for more stories that will help the viewers do the things they enjoy the most, with ease! 
 
Motivation

5 Reasons Why You Should Work with a Physical Trainer to Reach Your Fitness Goals

Youfit_BernettaStyle

It’s easy to say I am going to workout today, or go for a run just because. However, if you have body goals, you’re going to need more than just a casual workout. For years I was the type that worked out with videos. I was the Zumba video queen. I’ve also did Insanity, P90x, Tae-boo, Jillian Michaels & Fitness Blender all in the comfort of my own home. 

While I always seems to appear fit or nice in my clothes, I wasn’t 100% happy with my body because I knew it wasn’t where I knew I could be. I guess my husband either got tired of my sulking or wanted to put a huge smile on my face – either way it worked. He got me a physical trainer. 

Read: Five Reasons I Joined a Gym 

For four months, I worked out with a physical trainer and it was “body changing”. The entire time I thought, “Why did I wait so long to work with a trainer?” When you use a trainer the chances of you reaching those goals improves dramatically. 

Youfit_BernettaStyle

5 Reasons Why You Should Work with a Physical Trainer to Reach Your Fitness Goals

Smart Individual Strategy 

Like most people in the gym (or at home like me) they have no clue what their body needs when it comes to strength training, cardio or nutrition. You usually do the same exercises at the same weight for months and wonder why you haven’t seen major results. A personal trainer can discuss your body goals and based on their education, training and expertise can craft a personalized workout just for you.

Smart Food Choices 

An excellent trainer will share with you that working out is 80% eating and 20% exercise. They should be able to teach you what foods to eat and your personal nutritional need; calories, protein, carbohydrate, and fat grams. My trainer actually told me I wasn’t reaching my goals because I wasn’t eating right! I wasn’t eating enough protein to build muscle, although I thought because I was lifting weights I should see results. 

Accountability 

The number one reason people don’t exercise is, they claim they don’t have time. When you hire a trainer you are accountable not only to yourself but also that person. Meeting with a trainer locks you into a pre-scheduled training slot and when you are paying your hard earned money,  you’re not going to skip that appointment. Accountability can help force you into managing your time better, so you don’t miss a day. You may even start to look forward to time with your trainer. I actually got to a point where I didn’t want to let my trainer down and got excited when he said he was seeing improvement. 

Correct Exercises

Do you know how many people do a squat wrong? Do you know how many people hold their behind in the air too high when holding a plank? If you’re performing your exercises wrong, you’re not getting the maximum benefit of the exercise. Therefore, you’re not getting closer to your fitness goals. A trainer will show you exactly how to hold a position, weight or movement so that you actually feel it where you need to the most.  

Motivation

Being motivated on days you feel less than great can be hard.  Also, staying motivated consistently over the course of months or a long period of time can be almost impossible. A good trainer will assist you in staying motivated. Great personal trainers are able to tap into their clients mental and emotional needs much like a psychologist. I noticed when I worked with a trainer and heard, “Come on B, give me two more! I know you have 2 more in you!” I gave him 2 more. If he wasn’t pushing me, I probably would have stopped. 

Youfit_BernettaStyle

Where Can You Find a Trainer?

Earlier I told you that I was the work from home queen. Well, when I moved to Florida I took the plunge and joined a gym. I joined Youfit because of a few reasons:

  1. $10 a month without a monthly contract.
  2. The ability to upgrade the membership and visit any YouFit 
  3. Amazing classes that I’d never heard of before and now I can’t stay away from! My favorite one is Body Pump btw.
  4. Physical Trainers

Read: My Favorite Body Altering Exercise Class

One thing that I like about Youfit is that when you join, you get to meet with a physical trainer for a fitness assessment and sample workout. YouCoach personal trainers are available at all Youfit Clubs.

If I am honest with you, the last few times I went to workout I would watch the Youfit trainers with other members and try to do a similar workout. Unfortunately, because I wasn’t working with that trainer, I wasn’t benefiting fully from my copy cat workout.

GUESS WHAT! I started working with a YOUFIT TRAINER! After my first session, I left sore but excited. We worked out for 30 minutes and did a warmup, 2 circuits and a cool down. 

My trainer gave me her full attention during our session, she was 100% attentive and shared why were doing these exercises and pushed me to do my best. I left with a confirmation that trainer life is the life I want! 

Update: I am no longer a member of YouFit. We are now members of our local YMCA. We switched because the YMCA is more family friendly and our children go to the gym with us when we work out. We got a great deal to join for a family of 5 and we use their services weekly. 

Motivation

Disney Dreamer Alumni Creates a Crowd Funding Site for College Student Tuition

“Why can’t there be something like Kick-starter for school tuition?”

This was the sentence that Chisa Egbelu, heard from his college best friend, which was the catalyst for Pedul. His friend attempted to leave Rutgers University to pursue his dream by getting a degree in music at the school of his dreams. He soon discovered it was too expensive and ended up back at Rutgers the very next semester. 

When his friend said, “Why can’t there be something like Kick-starter for school tuition?” it sparked something inside of him. He partnered with Disney Dreamers Alumni Kayla Jackson and the two quickly became a power team.

Earlier this year, I was given an opportunity to attend the Disney Dreamers Academy and was blown away by Kayla Jackson and everything she has accomplished in such a short amount of time. Her recent venture, Pedul is changing the way students are paying for college and could be right on time for you and/or your college student. 

Disney Dreamers Alumni_BernettaStyle

I was able to interview Kayla about Pedul, check out her responses below:

What is Pedul?

A for-profit online crowd funding platform where students can raise money to help finance their higher education expenses. We help students optimize their campaigns, and also protect patronage like no other crowd funding sight.

We transfer funds directly from student campaigns to their university in the form of a 3rd party scholarship. We have two caveats that other crowd-funding sights aren’t doing

  1. Institution pages. For example: Rutgers university can have a page on the Pedul platform, and after 3 days, accumulated tax deductible donations are evenly distributed to students who are featured on that page, who have proven they go to Rutgers and they are financially in need. 
  2. Corporate sponsorship program. Example: Companies like Google can sponsor minority software engineers and not only are they matching every dollar that comes into their campaign, they are giving students access to senior leadership, training modules, workshops, and internship opportunities.

Pedul is also partnered with a few different Scholarship Foundations which can funnel their endowments (scholarships) directly to qualified students on the website. You basically get free money just for having a profile. 

How did it get started?

After officially starting the business, we were approached by a venture capitalist IDT, based out of Newark, NJ. We went through their incubator program for 3 months over the summer. We’ve partnered with about 16 schools before our launch in April 2017, 2 principalities, many youth organizations, 1st Tee, National Black Leaders of Tomorrow program.

Did you pitch the companies you work with?

One of the reasons Chisa brought me on was, because he knew I was an ambassador for many youth organizations. I’ve been playing golf since I was 3 years old and supposed to go division 1. That was what my dad had set me up for, until I decided my senior year I wasn’t going to let him live vicariously through me.

I was an ambassador for the 1st Tee and was invited out to speak to many chairman including President Bush. So, I was able to get a partnership through that collaboration. I was also the CEO and Chief of staff for the National Black NBA Leaders of tomorrow chapter for my sophomore, junior and senior year of high school. 

Any organizations outside of my connections were basically cold emails, cold tweets. I have mastered cold emails! It’s really about expressing the mission. Whenever I reach out to someone, I never say Pedul is…  

I express with the reason why I use Pedul as my platform. I always start with my WHY. The reason why I even do Pedul is to create access and opportunities. Especially for young people of color, many of whom don’t have access to online platforms.

Screen Shot 2017-07-18 at 9.41.59 PM

Do you have to be in high school to apply?

Right now the Pedul is open to high school seniors and current college seniors and grad students.

The end goal is to replace 529 plans. The challenge is there is a tax incentive for 529’s. There is no tax incentive for Pedul. We are trying to figure out if we can work with companies like Acorn and do micro investments. Then the investment grows with the stock market.  

What was the immediate benefit when you left Disney Dreamers? 

The most impactful thing that happened to me was, I found out my passion was impacting young lives. I thought I was on the path for journalism, but that mindset shifted at DDA. I learned that I didn’t need journalism to feel fulfilled. I didn’t have to be tied to a title. My favorite mantra is, “Don’t put me in a box”. I don’t like to stay in a lane. Vanessa Sikes, who ran the journalism program, told me, “Never allow anyone to diminish or dismiss your dreams.” That has stuck with me throughout my entire career.

Being a young black woman, I’ve had to prove myself many times. Usually when I step into a room, I am surround by older white men. I have to prove I bring value to the conversation. 

For Pedul, Education is the center of everything we do. It bridges the gap between purpose and life. Visit www.pedul.com to get more information and sign up.

We want to keep kids in school.
Follow @WeArePedul on all social media platforms

Disney Dreamer Academy Applications 2018 are open!

This is just one of the many great Disney Dreamers Alumni doing great things in the community. It’s just another reason why this program is so important for motivating teens to follow their dreams.

High school students nationwide can now apply at DisneyDreamersAcademy.com to be among 100 selected to participate in the 2018 DisneyDreamers Academy with Steve Harvey and ESSENCE, the innovative, outside-the-classroom, mentoring program that takes place in March at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida.

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Applications are open to U.S. high school students, ages 13 to 19, through Oct. 31, 2017. A distinguished panel of leaders will evaluate the applications, and selected participants will be announced in early 2018.

 

Motivation

My Steve Harvey Talk Show Debut with The Knighten Project

Steve Harvey_The Knighten Project

In 2015, I volunteered to do social media at Steve Harvey’s Act Like a Success conference in Virginia (DC area). It was amazing. I thought I would get to meet him, take a picture with him – and maybe engage in small talk since I was volunteering. 

Wrong.

I didn’t meet him or even get close to him. He flew out to his Disney Dreamers event shortly after he left the stage. That was the first time I had heard of Disney Dreamers and knew one day as I blogger, I would want to attend. 

Fast forward 4 months to July 2015, I interviewed Steve Harvey for Coca-Cola as he was the ambassador for their Pay it Forward Academy. It’s funny because the morning I received the email asking me if I wanted to interview him, I had decided to stop blogging!

I guess that was my sign to keep moving forward. He dropped so many nuggets during our interview and it was a day I will never forget. 

Steve

Check out the post and full interview here.

In 2016, I actually was given the opportunity to work (got paid this time) at his Act Like a Success Conference in Atlanta. I did social media again but was also given behind the scenes access to his VIP breakfast. Again, he dropped nuggets to all that attended. One thing I love about Steve is that he genuinely wants people to succeed and if you sit and listen to him, he will give you the tools to do so. 

So, 2017 rolls around and I’m invited to cover Steve Harvey’s 10th Annual Disney Dreamers Academy at Disney World in Orlando, Florida. This event is for 100 deserving teenagers ranging from 13-18. Although this event is for teenagers, you can’t help but leave motivated to follow your dreams. I didn’t get to talk to Mr. Harvey at this event at all, but a chance encounter with a friend and a conversation about The Knighten Project lead me to being a guest on his show 2 weeks later. 

In March, I was flown to Chicago to be a guest for his Just One More Thing Segment. I was able to share why I started The Knighten Project and give some examples of the things I’ve done. To my surprise, Steve Harvey handed me a $5000 check to continue my dream of making other people’s dream come true. 

This too is a day and experience I will never forget. Although we taped in March, the show is airing now (July) and I couldn’t wait to share the good news with my friends and family. 

My husband and I are also going through newly submitted dreams and deciding how we can make the best impact on people’s lives. 

A fun fact:  I did have “Work with Steve Harvey” on my vision board. However, I could not have imagined my path when it came to crossing with Steve Harvey and his team in so many ways. I feel so blessed to have experienced these opportunities.




If you want to donate to The Knighten Project please visit: http://theknightenproject.org/donation/

If you want to partner with The Knighten Project on making someone’s dream come true email me at Dream@TheKnightenProject.org

Motivation

LeBron James Plans to Open Up a Public School for Ohio At Risk Students

Photo: The Positive Community

By 

While he preps another NBA Championship with his Cleveland Cavaliers squad NBA phenom LeBron James is doing some great things off the court as well. It was revealed earlier today that LeBron James is set to open a public school for “at risk” kids in his hometown of Akron, OH.

The school will be called the “I Promise” school will educate students like those who are part of James’ foundation: “Students who are at-risk in reading and who are in need of additional academic intervention before falling further behind their peers,” according to the news release.

Read Full Story HERE

 

Event Recap Motivation

23 Disney Dreamers Academy Takeaways, Nuggets & Aha Moments!

When I received the invitation to the 10th Anniversary of Disney Dreamers Academy at Walt Disney World with Steve Harvey & Essence Magazine, I was OVERJOYED! I was excited to witness history in the making for 100 teenagers & their parents.

I was excited to listen to young adults share their dreams and discover the possibilities to make them happen. I was excited to listen to entrepreneurs, executives, celebrities, and CEOs speak into their lives so when they return home, they would never be the same.

I will never be the same.

Source: @MomsnCharge

Image source: @MomsnCharge

As a member of the media team, I was able to experience on March 9-12, 2017 the 10th Anniversary of the Disney Dreamers Academy from a different perspective. This year was special because it marks the year that 1000 students have officially went through this experience.

Amazingly, 10 Alumni (1 from each year) were brought back this year to talk about life after Disney Dreamers Academy. Not only are these young adults doing great things with their lives & the community, they are excited to pour into the lives of the current class.

Hosting Disney Dreamers Academy is a Big Deal

Steve Harvey, best selling author, comedian, national syndicated talk show, radio, & game show host has partnered with Disney Dreamers since the very beginning. He believes in the importance of dreaming big and starting early. Steve initially had a mentoring camp for boys & Disney had an idea for a Dreamers academy that they hadn’t got off the ground just yet. After meeting with each other, the Disney Dreamers Academy was born in 2008. 10 years later, upwards of 10,000 + applications are received every year (statistically, according to Jonathan Sprinkles it’s harder to get into Disney Dreamers Academy than Harvard).

Steve explained to us that if schools had a dream course in school, the dropout rate would decrease. It’s important to speak with a child every 30 days about their dreams.  

Image source: @MomsnCharge

Tracey Powell, Disney Dreamers Executive Champion explains the secret to getting accepted into the Disney Dreamers Academy is simply be able to articulate your dream.

You must be able to convey your dream and be specific.

During the 4 day event at Walt Disney World at Epcot in Lake Buena Vista, FL, I kept my pen and paper by my side. I wrote so many notes, takeaways, nuggets, aha’s, and just plain ole good stuff that I’m busting at the seems to share it with you.

Takeaways, Nuggets, and Aha Moments: 

Princeton Parker (DDA Alumni Class of 2011) shares 3 things Dreamers care about:

  1. How to broaden their perspective – not a title but a mindset
  2. Concerned about people – how they can help effect people understand the people before and after.
  3. Concerned about purpose – when purpose is not known, abuse in inevitable. 

Tevyn Cole (DDA Alumni Class 2008) shares Dream advice to the class of 2017 on how to make the best of the 4 days Disney Dreamer experience. 

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  1. Network more – utilize the time you have.
  2. Take every opportunity of everything and everyone.
  3. Get to know each other’s story.
  4. Find a mentor.
  5. Don’t limit yourself. Don’t put yourself in a box.
  6. Create your own opportunities.
  7. Your vibe attracts your tribe!
  8. Be comfortable with being you.

Jonathan Sprinkles dropped so many tweet-able nuggets, my hands stayed in tweet mode! Feel free to tweet a few out yourself.

  1. Have you ever met a hater that was doing better than you? Consider the source.
  2. Critics without credentials – pleasing people who’ve never been there will never get you there.
  3. Everyday, spend time in your dream.
  4. I don’t expect you to hear me, until you know me. You see the fruits, but let me tell you about the roots.
  5. It’s not where you start, but where you choose to finish.
  6. Never play the victim in your life story.
  7. Dreamers process things differently.
  8. If you can not see it, before you can see it – you will never see it.
  9. Your strangeness is your genius.
  10. Your dream comes in pieces.
  11. If you only focus on the what if, based on fear – you’ll never realize your dream.
  12. Keep it real, or just keep it.

One thing that was obvious, is that the all of the speakers were fully engaged with these teens. The teens asked questions, took notes & selfies! 

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This event had so many moving parts, it was hard to keep up. There was always something to do, but the cool part was that it’s Disney! Disney does everything with style and magic.

It was easy to see the magic in the eyes of these children & their parents. 

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This years commencement speaker was TJ Holmes, Good Morning America corespondent. He shared his story which gave us all a better understanding of him and why it’s important to stay the course. 

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Overall, the weekend had the best theme – follow your dreams, they are important. It could not be stressed enough. If I would have had this opportunity as a high school student, I would be an TV show host with …. let me stop. I am not sure where I would be, but I know that I would have made things happen for me a lot sooner than later.

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I hope the class of 2017 takes full advantage of the mentorship opportunities they took part in this weekend and go full force to create a personal legacy. I look forward to following their journey. 

 

Motivation

What Happens When You Start Dreaming at 13

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Growing up, I had great teachers. I will always remember my 7th grade teacher, Mr. Willis. He was a no non-sense man that demanded respect. My track coach, Finny, was the same way. 

No matter how great or memorable my teachers were, unfortunately they didn’t prepare me to dream. Meaning, all of their guidance got me through my season with them, and I still use principles I learned from them today. 

However, there were no programs when I grew up that promoted how important it is to follow your dreams young. Disney Dreamers accepts 100 high school (teens) students ages 13-19 every year to set a foundation that dreaming early is very important. 

Oh if only these types of opportunities were around in 19XX!

When you dream early, here’s what could happen:

  1. Reach your goals faster. When you start going after your dream early, you have less responsibilities (spouse, children). You can reach your goals early because you can focus solely on that. 
  2. Possible to have multiple dreams come true. Oprah says, when you make one dream come true, dream another dream. When one thing great happens, it becomes infectious and you want to keep working toward more goals. 
  3. Motivate and inspire others. If people see you do it, they believe they can. Sometimes people need to see it to believe it. When people see family members and friends pursuing their desires, they have tangible evidence that it’s possible. 
  4. You also prove to yourself that anything is possible. Less regrets, less roadblocks. 

Why Should Your Teen Apply for Disney Dreamers Academy?

The purpose of the Disney Dreamers Academy is to help unlock the potential in young people and enable them to imagine their futures anew through inspirational leaders who show how to set goals, make plans and dream big.

Disney Dreamers Academy Aims to:

  • Inspire students through immersive and inspirational guest speakers
  • Introduce a world of possibilities in a variety of interactive career sessions, ranging from animation, journalism, entertainment and entrepreneurship to culinary arts, medicine and zoology
  • Prepare students for the future through developing skills such as networking and interviewing

I’m looking forward to meeting some of these movers and shakers this week as I spend 3 days at the 10th Disney Dreamers Academy at Walk Disney World. This event is hosted yearly by Steve Harvey & Essence magazine.

Meet the Disney Dreamers Class of 2017 – Here

Of course 2017 is already here, but check out the details on how to apply for 2018 and what they are looking for. 

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Psssst!! I will share a few things I know they are looking for:

Key Attributes:

  • Intellectually curious – Creative and quick-witted
  • Compassionate – Gives to others who need their assistance
  • Courageous – Overcomes obstacles, brave, spirited, survivor
  • Leader – The “go-to” person, pursues ideas with passion

Attitude:

  • Dreams about their future
  • Positive approach to life
  • Grateful and humble
  • Takes advantage of resources

I could only imagine what my life would look like today if I was involved in a program like this at a young age. I’m excited for this group of teens and what they are going to experience over the next 4 days. 

Please check on BernettaStyle over the next coming weeks as I share more about Disney Dreamers Academy and why they take dreaming young seriously.  

Motivation

Why I’m Getting an Online Hub with Domain.Me

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My first dip into the online world was 2010. I created a blog called WIFE (Why Isn’t Forever Easy). It was about married life and everything that we as married women go through. In 2012, I rebranded to BernettaStyle.com. On this site, I was still able to talk about marriage, but added motherhood and motivation pieces. Over the last 6 years, everything that I’ve been able to do both online and offline still blows my mind.

It all started with a blog.

Over the last few years, I’ve continued writing on my blog but have started

  • a T-shirt store (One Dream Tees),
  • a non-profit (TheKnightenProject.com),
  • became a certified life coach which has allowed me to speak around the country (BernettaKnighten.com),
  • I created my first product that is now sold on Amazon (My Dream Year Planner and more).

As you grow as a person and start to branch out, everything can’t be in one place. Although, I honestly believe I’ve done a great job creating other projects and keeping the message the same, “Follow Your Dreams! They are just that important!” – I could not just have one site (or one web presence).

That’s similar to buying a house with no rooms or walls. There would be no division between the bedroom, kitchen or bathroom. You’d constantly have to tell your guest that this space is where I sleep or I eat here.

It’s funny because although I have different websites, interest and offerings – it becomes hard to share it all with someone when they say, “Tell me a little about yourself!” I feel like I need to read off a list.

The Online HUB

Remember when I mentioned having a house with no rooms or walls? Well, thanks to Domain.ME, I will now have a house with detailed room and wall dividers. Instead of telling people about my many different sites, they can get a glimpse of everything I do. I’ve gotten a sneak peak and it’s a well-designed HUB that showcases all of my major life projects. I simply love it.

On my Domain.ME Online Hub, I will highlight

  • My Blog (that started it all)
  • My Speaking Engagements
  • My Non-profit
  • My Product (Dream Year Planner)
  • Videos (I love a good how-to & interview)

I believe it will ultimately benefit me because people can get a glimpse of everything I have to offer without going to 5 different sites. Personally, across the board, my message is the same and now they will be able to see how, from a new perspective.

Who are Online HUBS good for?

When I started a blog 7 years ago, I had no idea I would meet so many people that desire to be their own boss. If you have multiple interest, businesses, community involvement or personal projects, a HUB could showcase them all in a well-designed format.

Did you know:

  • Domain.ME was created to provide you with the space you need to build your personal brand or an amazing online persona that is a true reflection of yourself. It’s a great marketing tool,
  • .ME domains are perfect for personal websites, blogs, businesses, online portfolios or social media profiles.
  • Domain.ME is uniquely positioned to provide you with the space you need to build your personal brand and create a captivating online persona that’s a direct reflection of you.

If you would, please come back for THE BIG REVEAL SOON. On the next post, I will be showcasing my new hub! A .ME domain name is THE choice if you are looking for a memorable way to represent yourself online.

Here are some examples of personal branding online hubs:

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This post was inspired and sponsored by Domain.ME, the provider of the personal domains that end in .ME. As a company, they aim to promote thought leadership to the tech world. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Motivation

Giveaway for 2 Lucky Girls, 2 Bailee’s Nail Boxes

 

We (my daughter & I) launched Bailee’s Nail Box in January and we have loved every minute of the images we are sent of little girls opening their Bailee’s Nail Box! 

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The pictures of little girls painting their mother, fathers, aunts, best friends nails bring the biggest smiles to our faces. 

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Our course we want every little girl to be able to have a Bailee’s Nail Box, so one way we can start this trend is to give one, well TWO away.

gv 1Thanks to Cassandra Cummings, Founder of The Stocks & Stilettos Society, who sponsored this giveaway, we are giving away 2 boxes.

The Stocks & Stilettos Society is a community of beginning investors who are stepping up their financial acumen by investing in the stock market to achieve their long-term financial goals. Founded by Cassandra Cummings, a licensed financial advisor and investment adviser representative for more than 10 years.

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We’d love to give away 2 boxes to two deserving little girls. 

How do you enter?

  1. Subscribe to Bailee’s Nail Box NailLetter.
  2. Share below something special about your little girl. 




The contest will end in March 2nd, 2017