Since 2014 I have been reviewing luxury hotels, cars and food. I never studied social media marketing or journalism. I have had no formal training when it comes to reviews or being a car critique. So when I began my first ever hotel review way back in 2014. I had no idea what I was doing and what my format was going to be like. Just like my journey in creating MenStyleFashion. I have learnt along the way. My quest has been about doing the very opposite to what people are normally use to seeing. Creating a niche market within the lifestyle and fashion industry is how I have become known. Pushing boundaries, thinking outside the box and not conforming to the traditional ways of marketing. It is why, I can write about what I define as a luxury lifestyle.
My journey has been all about discovering my talents and following most of the time, my God given gut instinct.I am a christian and God chose me from the age of three to listen to his promptings and have no fear. I know that for this reason alone I am reaping the rewards. So in 2016 after reviewing nearly seventy luxury hotels. I ask myself the question, what does luxury mean in today’s world?
Having two brands is so powerful, two platforms targeting both men and women. As I can experiment about luxury lifestyle and market it with our own hashtag #weshowyouhow.
I ponder, what is Luxury Travel all about in 2016?
Luxury The Definition
The dictionary defines it as, great comfort, especially as provided by expensive and beautiful things. I will argue that what maybe beautiful to me may not be beautiful to you. What I define as expensive, you may find it not expensive at all. Over the last few months it has been a question I ask often. I have to because every luxury experience I am reviewing becomes more challenging for me to define.The following examples are what I define as luxury and the purpose of this article is to inspire you to create your own world of luxury and lifestyle.
What is the hidden pearl, the rare natural definition of luxury?
Freedom Of Speech
If you have family and friends who allow you to speak your mind and encourage you to pursue what is dear to your heart. Whether it be spoken or through actions then for me this is luxury. If you are in an environment where your opinion is valued and listen too, then this is luxury. If you have family or friends who challenge your freedom of speech, this too is luxury. If you have the confidence to be who you are regarding you freedom to speak your thoughts. Then this is luxury.
There is the big problem, if an industry does not allow you to be yourself or allow you to push new boundaries as a social media influencer. For me this is not luxury and it comes down to their own personal insecurities, fears and naivety. It has been a massive learning curve to be around people within the fashion industry that are very insecure and act in ways that is hostile, cold and rude. These so called beautiful people form the outside are one of the most insecure people I know. It is time that this has to change.
The way fashion organisations hold on to dated traditional mindsets has made me feel fearful in not being myself. This is a tragedy and therefore it has been difficult to understand or know whether to stay in such a hostile environment. But I am a fighter, and believe through hard work and understanding that not everyone is going to embrace you or are ready for change. And it is important to understand, why you should never give up. I have been at other fashion events where in other countries I too have felt awkward. For me this is not healthy let alone productive environment. But I chose to stay in it, because the industry need people like me. I also have created such a unique niche, that the industry can’t ignore me.
So my message here is simple. If you can’t be yourself in a working environment, that only makes you feel uncomfortable, stressed and like you’re walking on egg shells. Then this is not luxury at all. You have to decide whether it is mentally healthy for you to remain in it. For me I am not going any where, but right back into the fashion industry where I may not belong in the eyes of the traditional fashion elite. But where my followers love to see me, being myself, being Gracie.
Safety in today’s world is becoming increasingly concerning. We are in a world where self policing is essential in order to avoid being, bombed, stubbed, beaten up or bullied. Race hate is on the increase and unpredictable behavior is concerning too. So for me where you live is a massive example of luxury. Where you feel your life is safe and you’re in an environment where you are not worried about being killed or suppressed. Then this is what I define as luxury. A place where you can walk freely knowing that life is safe.
This is very important to establish that who you hang around with defines who you are. I choose not to hang around negative people. The hardest thing is to leave loved ones for your own personal gain. I can’t handle being around people that have no vision, hope or dreams. I have enough battles in growing my brands than to be around jealous, negative people that I call energy suckers. Ask yourself this question. Am I fulfilling my dreams and ambitions? If you’re not then who are your mates, who is inspiring you or in most cases who is holding you back. When you find the right people this for me is luxury. If it was not for my loved ones I would not be where I am today as a person and as a business. My friends and family are my luxury. Meeting new people around the globe are my inspiration and are my luxury too. That is how I have come to appreciate life and its value.
Time today is a precious. Having time for yourself is pure luxury. Making time is important for your body, soul and mind. Having time to think and reflect on what you’re striving for is important to keep asking yourself. Having time with family and friends is luxury. Having time to exercise and eat well is luxury. Having some extra cash to be able to handle rough financial moments is luxury. Having a bed to sleep in and enough money to buy some treats for yourself is luxury. Having the time to go on a holiday is luxury. Not commuting for hours in traffic and been able to walk to work is luxury. Having the time and flexibility to pursue you dreams is pure luxury. Having the time to think and reflect is luxury. Being healthy is a luxury. Having a sound mind and understanding how to handle difficult situations is luxury. Having a mindset of not giving up, is luxury. Exploring new cultures is luxury. Meeting new people is luxury.
Making the time to enjoy family, friends and networking for new opportunities. My business could have flourished so much quicker, if I understood the value of networking and gave people the time. Networking is like a door handle, it opens new opportunities, and new friends.
Are You Living the Life You Want?
I have been blessed that I finally found my thing, regarding my career, but it has taken many years to discover what job role suits me. I am on a quest to keep creating brands that encourage and inspire others to take the leap of faith. Even if you’re scared to death. I am living the world of luxury because I work hard and am disciplined in pursuing my personal goals. I have had the luxury to know God from a very young age. I pray and listen to his promptings and due to my obedience towards God most of the time. I am reaping the rewards of luxury.I have created a brand that allows me to review the world of luxury in a material setting.
But don’t be fooled as this has taken most of my life to achieve. For me the world of luxury is what you create and set out to achieve, no matter what the cost. My advice is this, no matter how hard it is to find and create your world of luxury, never ever give up.
The following images are all taken by me in helping build my social media influence and my brands. I don’t put it out there as to shove it in your face. Just to let you know three years ago, my house burnt down, my partner had a cash crash 6 weeks later and had the car stolen. i lost everything but my family. To date insurance for all my belongings have not paid up. So I understand what it feels like to lose everything.
In today’s world of madness, unpredictability and where more and more a bomb can go off. I encourage you, to pursue each day as if it was your last. Pursue your definition of luxury and create your own lifestyle.