Michael B. Jordan & Serena Williams Have A Lot Riding on How They Prepare for The Next Phase of Their Best Life

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The college football championship was the kind of game fans dream of. It brought together two undefeated teams and a Heisman winning quarterback. When the last play was over the LSU Tigers were crowned for having a perfect season. That’s not something that happens on the regular.

Then there’s Serena Williams and Michael B Jordan who’re champions in their own right. Williams with her superhuman performances on the tennis court and Jordan with his superhero acclaim on the big screen. They’re built like weight room stock as they reach for new goals and advocate for denied souls.

Plus, they have a lot riding on how they prepare for the next phase of their best life. Williams was recently named the AP athlete of the decade. She’s won more championship titles in a 10-year span than any tennis player past or present. Her grand slam wins have taken her to the top of the heap in the sport.

Jordan’s career brings flashbacks to a stint on the Cosby show before landing his breakout performance in Fruitvale Station. He’s described as having delivered an Oscar-worthy performance in Just Mercy. In between those movies he brought the Rocky-themed flick back to life by starring in Creed.

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Recently, Williams was seen working out in the boxing gym, with coaching tips from Mike Tyson. She’s focused on fine-tuning certain parts of her game in order to have more than a fighting chance to make history. They’ll tell you that their work involves preparing for the grind in mind, body and spirit for the new:

  1. Season

A new year might not always line-up as a new season. Sometimes it’s the continuation of things that have already started. What happens in the off-season sets the stage for the results during the season. She’s spent time readying for the grand-slam season on things like strength, flexibility, power and endurance.

  1. Project

Williams takes seriously her efforts to affect women’s issues. When not on the court, she’s exploring projects that help her grow personally or might make a difference generationally. She aims for greatness that isn’t limited to tennis titles she’ll earn but also the legacy she’ll leave behind.

  1. Level

Each time Jordan has played in a movie he’s taken his acting chops to another level. That’s a sign of his growth and development. We’ve watched it happen right before our eyes from Fruitvale Station to Friday Night Lights to Creed and more recently in Black Panther.

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  1. Role

For his latest role in Just Mercy, he remembers getting the script and feeling embarrassed that he didn’t know about the Equal Justice Initiative and Bryan Stevenson. But he spent time doing the research to up his social justice cred. Now he’s working on a new role in a Tom Clancy film called Without Remorse.

Jordan recently took a visit to his old high school that was part photo shoot and part meet and greet. Williams after her recent tournament donated all the prize money to the Australian fire relief. You can’t count them out as underdogs. That’s because they put the work in to advance their game and a cause.

Tip: You prepare for the next phase of your best life by how you put in the work to advance your game and a cause.

Talkback: So did Jordan also get snubbed in not getting an Oscar nomination?

Tracks: Alicia Keys – Underdog – https://youtu.be/izyZLKIWGiA

Billie Eilish – Everything I Wanted – https://youtu.be/SlnTiyjaFsg

Ashley Graham and John Legend Are Dusting Off Shelf Space for More Awards & Pics of Their Best Selfie

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What do Ashley Graham and John Legend have in common? They’ve both topped lists that most folks wouldn’t even dream possible for them. Graham has graced the covers of Sports Illustrated magazine as one of America’s ‘Hottest Full-Figured Women.’ That simply means lots of voluptuous to go around.

For Legend, he was named People Magazine’s 2019 ‘Sexiest Man Alive.’ Let’s leave that to the ladies on what that means. It’s not as if he doesn’t already have his hands full. As a singing coach on NBCs The Voice, he can be seen on weeknights giving praise to emerging artists on their melody and high notes.

So, if folks are wondering what it takes to get named on any of these lists, for legend it might start with him being a crooner. He’s known for love-letter type music ballads that crossover music genres. Legend today, is like Sinatra of old. How his words flow does the same thing to fans today as Sinatra did then.

With Graham, it’s about being true to herself. She’s never shied away from her physical features as a plus-sized woman. Her self-acceptance has developed into inner confidence. This has carried over into becoming a pop culture crowd favorite on the runway and in the podcast world.

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Bu there’s one list they might say that everyone gets the chance to top. It’s the ‘Best Self Alive’ list where who you are aligns with your purpose and what you do is developed through strength, courage and wisdom. Even if we don’t make it into People Magazine or Sports Illustrated, we can still pack our:

  1. Handsome

It’s the first things ladies see in Legend. But Graham knows becoming ‘Best Self Alive’ might also mean turning what’s in your ‘hand’ into ‘some’ thing of value. Graham shares how she learned to sew at a young age. Not everybody brings handsome to the table like Legend. But most can hand-some value.

  1. Headband

Legend is known for featuring his wife’s headband creations on social media, especially when they’re on vacation.  It’s how she works creatively with her hand as well as her head. The real power players in the game also know that when creative minds band their heads together it raises the level of fine work.

  1. Heartstring

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Graham might say voluptuous for her was simply a ‘means to an end.’ She didn’t start out hoping to be full-figured. She just owned her package and celebrated her lineage. Even though she’s expecting her second child, Graham is still doing jumping jacks in the gym and stroking the heartstrings of fans.

  1. Home-feel

For Legend and Graham, being in the limelight isn’t something they necessarily crave. It simply comes with the territory. Even with their star power and rave reviews they give fans a kind of at-home, hometown feeling. They also get props for how they’re raising a family and developing success at home.

If Hollywood were to put together its ’40 Under 40’, then they’d likely top the list. He’s already gotten the major performance awards of Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony which is why he’s called an EGOT. Their good looks and humble charm make you wanna show them love ‘cause they got juice.

Tip: The ‘Best Self Alive’ list leaves room for packing your handsome, headband, heartstring and home-feel that adds to your success.

Talkback: Is John’s team the one to beat on this season of The Voice?

Tracks: Alicia Keys ft. 21 Savage, Miguel – Show Me Love – https://youtu.be/Qr1kiCDAdxQ

Lizzo – Juice – https://youtu.be/N8ZI1Jlrf-w

Tiffany Haddish Says Tyler Perry Adds a Secret Sauce to Light a Fire Under His Biz Dreams and Project Teams

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Remember when Tyler Perry appeared on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon? He was promoting his then new movie Nobody’s Fool which featured Tiffany Haddish. He talked about how he gave Haddish a new Tesla as a gift for her emerging talent. He was offering encouragement on her dream journey.

Well, fast forward to recent events and you see how thing have played out. This time it’s Haddish explaining how the car was a material gift, but the best gift that Perry gives today is for us to dream bigger. That’s what he wanted guests at his recent studio grand opening to take away from the event.

Here are two showbiz players who’ll tell you they started out on what might seem like the wrong side of the tracks. Haddish went through a period of bouncing around foster homes and later living in her car. Perry went through a period of homelessness and disappointments before selling out his plays.

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Now he’s 100% owner of the largest movie production studio in America, supposedly bigger than the three main Hollywood studios combined. Haddish is the newest host of the re-booted Kids Say the Darndest Things. Their stories remind us that it’s possible to turn lemons into lemonade.

Folks are still raving about the ‘glory to glory’ theme of the event. Some say it had a Met Gala feel. Others think it was like Emmys, Grammys and Oscars combined. Those events usually have guests leaving with a swag bag. But Perry’s guests might have left with a dream bag that had success tools like a:

  1. Compass

We know the many artistic sides of Perry. His work has traveled the world over. A compass is good for going in the right direction not just on the road but also the highway of life. It’s in going north, east, south and west in the direction of one’s purpose, calling, passion and dream guiding you to fulfill your destiny.

  1. Clock

They say it feels like time stops when passion is in play. You forget about time as in the clock edition and operate with time as in the divine edition. This way you’re not getting upset when things don’t work out on a rigid schedule. Perry’s seen both clock time and divine time at work that’s brought things to pass.

  1. Calculator

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Haddish will tell you she wasn’t the best student in school. She writes in her book of how a certain teacher helped her with reading. With all the success coming her way now, she’s probably happy for a calculator to add-up the checks. It’s also a success tool to correctly calculate risks for the next-level rise.

  1. Clip

She probably remembers days as a child having to wear certain hair clips. They were a staple back in the day. Today she’s excited about the video clip that came with the Perry invite. That’s another kind of memorable clip along with many others from the event that guests will cherish for years to come.

Perry says he remembers being invited by Oprah to one of her Legends Balls and thinking to himself, “why am I here?” Well it’s that personal reflection clip that inspired the past decade or more of his life. He’s grateful, mindful and fruitful. Maybe it’s a glimpse of life with unstoppable blessing on blessings.

Tip: A swag bag might come with treats for style & beauty. But a dream bag comes with success tools like a compass, clock, calculator and clip to fulfill your destiny.

Talkback: How crazy is it for Perry to now own what was once a Confederate military base?

Tracks: Koryn Hawthorne – Unstoppable ft Lecrae – https://youtu.be/us7hvF6lsoc

Anthony Brown & Group Therapy – Blessing on Blessings – https://youtu.be/p58HS6h3l10

Here’s What John Legend and Iyanla Vanzant Reveal About Being ‘Hired for Looks or Wired for Success’

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Well Spike Lee finally won at the Oscars and it was celebrated by one of his homeboys. When Samuel L. Jackson realized he’d be announcing Lee as the winner for Best Adapted Screenplay, he gave out a big shout. It wasn’t Lee’s first Academy nomination, but it took almost 30 years before he’d finally won one.

John Legend is also looking for his first, not Oscar but Voice winner. He’s the newest coach on NBCs singing reality show. Speaking of reality shows, how about Fix My Life, with the no-nonsense queen herself. Legend and Iyanla Vanzant reveal more about being ‘hired for looks or wired for success.’

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For Legend it’s been one of going the traditional route in earning his college degree from an Ivy League University. No one might know since he’s so down to earth and easy going. He’s been strongly influenced by the musical background of his family which helps explain why he feels at home belting tunes.

Vanzant works with folks who’re trying to get a handle on some facet of their life. Sometimes it’s personal, relational or even professional. Each week she shares bits and pieces of her story along the way on her OWN Network show. She’s even taken steps to bring her message to fans on her Get Over It tour.

Legend’s one of the few who’s an EGOT, for winning Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony Awards. For Vanzant, her show recently received two NAACP Image Awards nominations. But what we see on the outside doesn’t tell the full story of the journey. Before the success, they were on the R.O.A.D. of:

  1. Rejection

Legend says he learned a lot about music from his grandmother who was a church organist. Over the years he’s worked with many music artists who’re Grammy winners themselves. But Legend remembers those times when he was rejected by every major record label before getting his first music contract.

  1. Omen

Maybe the rejections helped him work harder. Maybe the setback on her first Talk Show helped Vanzant become wiser about showbiz. They, like others who’ve been on the R.O.A.D. might point to a certain time or situation that proved to be like an omen. It was a kind of prophetic tell-tale sign of things to come.

  1. Advice

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Vanzant’s become a sought-after personality for advice and counsel. She embraced advice she received in her own life when things weren’t ‘in order’ as they are now. She knows that there’s advice people give that might discourage or tear you down, while others give advice to encourage and build you up.

  1. Destiny

Now that Legend is a coach on the Voice he’s helping emerging artists live their dreams. He’s walked the walk in the music business. Vanzant is offering folks some ‘reality check’ advice because as she like to say ‘she’s done the work’ as well. They’re fulfilling their destiny as they help others do the same.

Whether or not they were hired for goods looks, they have personal experience of what it means to be wired for success. Vanzant might say when you do the work on your inner self, you’ll achieve the worth of your best self. Legend knows rejection paves the way for your selection and also saying ‘hello happiness.’

Tip: The road that success travels is one that might take folks from rejection to selection and also saying ‘hello happiness.’

Talkback: Since they’re so good, what can Legend not do as an artist or Vanzant not fix in life?

Tracks: Chaka Khan – Hello Happiness – https://youtu.be/JG6D59k9U8Q

Khalid – Talk – https://youtu.be/Y1QZOprK7PQ

Checkout Spike Lee and Regina King Exchanging Notes on ‘Being in The Running’ and Getting That First Shot at the Big Prize

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It’s maybe one of the biggest no-calls in an NFL game. That’s the general feeling among players and fans after the Saints-Rams championship. Even the Rams defensive player helped make the point. That turnover moment will be remembered for how it took away Saints momentum during the late stretch.

Then there’s the roll-call coming out of Hollywood with this year’s Oscar nominations. Lots of buzz around Spike Lee getting his first pick ever. There’s probably just as much attention Lee will receive if he wins as Regina King got when she won at the Golden Globes. Imagine what we’d learn if they exchanged notes?

Lee and King spent a lot of time ‘being in the running.’ Over the years Lee has produced a host of films that made waves in pop culture. But it seems he kept being overlooked by the Academy. King was a child actor on the sitcom ‘227’ before becoming a Director and making her powerful statement at the Globes.

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They’d tell the story going from no-call in Hollywood to roll-call in nominations and going from first-look to getting that first-shot in industry. They kept doing their thing even when overlooked. As they worked on their performance styles and pleasing audiences, they had love for the fans and hustle-love for the game.

Lee has produced films that raise social awareness and deliver entertainment value. Sometimes he appears on sports-talk shows debating crossover topics. King has seen roles from the small screen to the big movie sets. And she’s preparing for a new career goal in 2019 as she steps-up her game with some:

  1. School Days

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There’s the movie School Daze that Lee produced around the HBCU college scene. But there’s also ‘school days’ that King is ready to tackle. She knows there’s more to learn about herself, her craft and showbiz as an industry. That’s probably a satisfaction Lee now feels having gone down that road.

  1. Challenge Days

King realizes that her goal will come with some challenge days. These aren’t just days of a social media challenge which can get out of hand. Folks are doing crazy stuff for no good reason. The challenge days King expects involve doing big stuff for greater results. Such challenge days can bring greater meaning.

  1. Tough Calls

With the Saints game, one view is that the no-call was a tough call to make. That’s maybe why the NFL plans to consider whether pass-interference plays will be subject to video review in the future. There’re tough calls to make when it comes to being in the running and getting your first shot at the big prize.

  1. Pitch Calls

Over the years Lee has probably done a few ‘pitch calls’ where he’s made the case for his next project. A part of stepping-up her game means King will have to do the same. Making the pitch often involves figuring-out the niche. That helps with opening new doors and bringing new ideas to the marketplace.

The Vegas bookies will give the odds-on favorite for which team has the best chance to win in the Superbowl. The showbiz talkers will get into the nitty-gritty on who’s got the best chance to win in each Oscars category. Lee and King know it’s not an easy road, but they meet the challenge by taking a shot.

Tip: Showbiz & sports stars know success is in having love for the fans and hustle-love for the game.

Talkback: Is it time for Spike Lee to win that big one and for pass-interference calls to be reviewable?

Tracks: Buju Banton – Not an easy road – https://youtu.be/5JQcn9w_PUk

Ella Mai – Shot Clock – https://youtu.be/RR1_p1zjeSI

John Legend & Chrissy Teigen Celebrate Showbiz, Motherhood and How They Refresh Their Shine for a Brighter & Wider Fanbase

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Who remembers the fast-food chain that made famous the question ‘where’s the beef?’ It was a way of saying their burgers had more beef than their competitors. These days the question some are asking is ‘what’s the beef?’ Nicki and Cardi are still working on the answer. Drake and Meek Mill say they’re done.

Well there’s no ‘beef’ between John Legend and Chrissy Teigen. Actually, there’s nothing but love. Sometimes sexy love other times ‘hustle love.’ Teigen says she’s getting back into the sexy swing of things now that she’s upped her role in motherhood. With two mouths to feed ‘hit and run’ has new meaning.

Legend is busy doing the showbiz thing after winning an Emmy for his work with the ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’ production. With this award he joins a select group of celebs who’re among the EGOTs. He’s the youngest and first black male to get an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony for his artistic roles.

This summer they spent a few weeks in Bali where Teigen appeared in social media posts wearing her ‘headband of the day’ while hubby John serenaded her with a song. That’s a long way from her days as a teenage catalog model and then gaining major fame as a Swimsuit cover model.

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Whether it’s the sexy love between them or the ‘hustle love’ that fuels them, they celebrate how they refresh their shine for a brighter and wider fanbase. Teigen has a new cookbook while Legend is set to release new music. It’s the passion for doing their thing that tells us about how they up their game using:

  1. Script – learn the job, produce the work

Every job has ways for getting stuff done. It could be as simple as learning a script and executing the task. That’s how it goes for TV sitcoms and scripted programs. As a songwriter and singer, Legend knows the process. He uses that same skill to learn the job and produce the work with other projects as well.

  1. Sound – find your voice, rock the game

With most work assignments there’s usually a learning curve. It takes some time to get the feel and flow of things. After a while a rhythm develops. That’s how it happens in the music biz and in other lines of work. There’s the groove track to which you add lyrics. This way you find your voice and rock the game.

  1. Screen – stretch your sights, see the big picture

A beach trip or Caribbean vacation is often a time to slow down and chill. Some might even checkout the view as the sun rises and sets beyond the horizon. It’s like watching time pass on life’s big screen. You get to stretch your sights while seeing the big picture. This does wonders for R&R and helping dreams go far.

  1. Stage – do it up, bring the fun

The stage is where performance comes together. John Legend’s stage as a music artist is different from Teigen’s stage as a model. With your job or career, when things come together on the work stage there’s usually a sale, a promotion, a cheer or other forms of excitement as a return on commitment.

It seems like their celebrity side hustle of ‘headband of the day’ videos have taken a break. As they get back-to-the-grind they’re juggling work, kids and other steps that come with the role. And as they get out of bed to face another day they’re doing those things to shine in ways that moves fans and dollars.

Tip: As we get out of bed to face another day it calls for ‘hustle love’ which means doing those things to shine in ways that moves customers, fans and dollars.

Talkback: Hey Tiffany Haddish, what’s the beef between Nicki and Cardi? (I don’t Know)

Tracks: Ne-Yo – Sexy Love – https://youtu.be/mgaeGW-2z6w

Vivian Green – I Don’t Know – https://youtu.be/HNg80zNpPwU

Jordan Peele & Iyanla Vanzant Take Audiences on a ‘Sharp Turn, Best Life’ Ride that’s Filled with Ooh’s and Aah’s

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The countdown is underway for the next big events on the pop culture calendar. Some fans can’t wait for the NCAA March Madness team selection. Others are looking forward to the iHeartRadio Music Awards. But in the meantime there’s Jordan Peele and Iyanla Vanzant taking fans on a ‘sharp turn, best life’ ride.

For Peele it’s in the success of his movie Get Out which won at the Oscars for Best Original Screenplay. It’s the first time that’s happened for an African-American. The movie is part horror, part thriller and part comedy. It starts out with a car making a sharp turn on a local street as the plot unfolds.

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It was a different kind of March Madness in the season opener for Iyanla’s ‘reinvention show’ on OWN. Things didn’t work out the normal way where the guest accepts the chance to find a path towards their best life. Peele and Vanzant generally put their gifts to work on their first audience.. which is themselves.

They know the road to redemption or achieving aspirations usually starts on ‘Self Street.’ Oftentimes how we reach higher is an extension of our comfort with self. Peele and Vanzant turned what appeals/reveals to self as a formula for a successful movie or unscripted TV show that could have been counted out.

In a recent ‘Oprah at the Apollo’ interview Peele gave an inside look into the steps he took in moving his dreams in the right direction. Vanzant often shares hers by saying that she had to do the work to achieve the healing before her place of shining. Their first audience of success started out by taking:

  1. Preparation Steps

Before celebration there’s always preparation. That’s true whether planning a party or going after your dreams. Before becoming a computer engineer I took preparations steps in college. Before going after my dreams in business I took preparation steps as a novice-in-training. These steps help put us in the game.

  1. Production Steps

It’s been said that people can have beginners luck when playing a game for the first time. Things kinda come your way even without trying hard. Where beginners luck ends is where production steps begin. It can be a surprise to do things well the first time. But you build production value doing it again and again.

  1. Breakout Steps

We expect to eventually have breakout steps along the way. The ‘Get Out’ movie is a sort of breakout step for Peele after leaving his Comedy Central gig. Vanzant had her breakout step when she first hosted a daytime talk show. They’ve used breakout steps in taking a risk or setting out as a trailblazer.

  1. Comeback Steps

They’ve also shown they can turn setbacks into comebacks. It’s something we’re teaching our daughter who’s been dealing with a leg (hamstring) injury. Each time it seemed like she was ready to return to her sport she’s had to pull back. Comeback steps help us with raising our game and elevating our dreams.

The journey of a 1000 miles begins with the first step. Whether we choose to walk, run or drive there can be lots of oohs and aahs on the ride. Steve Harvey reminds us that things might go south or get rough as part of God’s plan. But those who get back up keep things moving because they have dreams to celebrate.

Tip: The dream journey of a 1000 miles starts with preparation steps that might set us on a path as trailblazers taking breakout steps.

Talkback: Is it drama or trauma that makes things come alive in Get Out or on Vanzant’s TV show?

Tracks: Drake – God’s Plan – https://youtu.be/xpVfcZ0ZcFM

T.I. ft Chris Brown – Get Back Up – https://youtu.be/B9qZz-m6BL4