My mother told me a long time ago that I was the type of person who, when wronged, will bark first then ask questions later. She also pointed out to me (as if I did not know) that I give off a “do not ‘F’ with me under any circumstances” type of vibe at times and it can be offsetting to some people. Again, this was something I was very aware of and something I thought was a great thing! I could just look at someone and they knew not to even come close to me, say anything to me or utter any additional ridiculous rhetoric from their grimy little mouths.

Must Read: CHICK CHAT: How To Let Go Of Guilt Even When You’re At Fault

A dear friend told me the following story today via our mid-day What’s App Chat:

“We had a position open in my group back in June of 2011…. A level

above mine. I was doing part of the work, filling in for the position

[on top of the work I was hired to do]. When I told my boss that I

intended to apply for [the position], she basically told me that she

didn’t think I was ready for it and based this decision of hers (no lie)

on my facial expressions in meetings.”

Here is a little background on my dear friend. She is VERY smart, graduated with honors and has worked with some of the most notables companies in the nation. She is a go-getter and she takes no mess from anybody! She will cuss you out in one breath, then offer you a pot of chicken and dumplings in the next.

So when she told me this story, I knew the EXACT faces she was making in those meetings (because I have seen them plenty of times) and I honestly knew why her boss would be put off by it. She may not have had malicious intent by those faces, but I am certain that her co-workers (who don’t know her personally) could have taken her comments and her facial expressions in a manner she did not necessarily intend.

The position she wanted to apply for will be available again, as the man who was eventually hired for the position has resigned. My response was “Look at GOD!” I am certain she has learned a lesson in this process and will approach her future promotion with an alternate disposition.

It is hard to be nice and/or maintain a pleasant disposition in a hostile or nerve-wrecking work environment. I WILL give you that. However, if what you are seeking can be directly achieved with a SMILE along with hard work, I suggest you turn that stank face and mean mug into some honey that will bring you money.

I have been humbled throughout the years, in love, work, health and spirituality, however, I am happy to report that I have learned this valuable lesson over the years as well. “You can catch more flies/bees with honey than you can with vinegar.“ This idiom that has been uttered by a many a Big Mamas and Aunt Mabels and is equally as important in the workplace as it is in your personal affairs.

Rashida Maples, Esq. is Founder and Managing Partner of J. Maples & Associates ( She has practiced Entertainment, Real Estate and Small Business Law for 9 years, handling both transactional and litigation matters. Her clients include R&B Artists Bilal and Olivia, NFL Superstar Ray Lewis, Fashion Powerhouse Harlem’s Fashion Row, KinderJam, LLC and Hirschfeld Properties, LLC.

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