Navigating Adult Friendships with LaShonda Brown and Kayla Hollatz

Do you struggle with adult friendships? Holding valuable friendships as an adult is hard, but navigating them is even harder. In today’s episode, two of my dear friends, LaShonda Brown and Kayla Hollatz join me to talk about how they make friends, build relationships, and recognize value in their friendships in adulthood.

This is Season 1 Episode 1 of Here’s the Tea with Akua

Here’s the Tea with Akua is a safe space to learn about hot topics, gain a new perspective and have a greater understanding of the people around us. You’ll hear amazing stories of everyday people like you and me. They’ll be spilling the tea and giving us an honest look into their lives. As we discuss topics such as race, relationships, mental health, and how to just figure out the thing called life, we’d love to have you subscribe on Apple Podcast, Spotify, or your favorite podcast player!

Meet LaShonda:

LaShonda Brown is a Corporate Film Producer, Tech Educator & YouTuber. With over a decade of experience producing educational videos for small businesses and Fortune 500 companies internationally, LaShonda utilizes YouTube to teach entrepreneurs how to leverage tech to grow their businesses online while generating passive income.

Meet Kayla:

Kayla Hollatz is a trusted website copywriter and strategist for entrepreneurs and their favorite SaaS tools. She takes a “strategy first, words second” approach to copywriting, teaching others to embrace conversion techniques and experiment with new ideas

Important Parts of the Conversation:

Get to Know LaShonda (2:00) 

Get to Know Kayla (2:44)

How I Met Kayla (4:ish)

How LaShonda & Kayla Met (6:30)

Navigating Friendships in the Pandemic (9:18)

Honoring Perspectives & Supporting Each Other (11:43)

Recognizing Toxicity (15:10)

Ending Friendships (17:47)

Prioritizing Truth & Being Confrontational (20:10)

Navigating HealthyConfrontations (23:11)

Check your heart (26:21)

Loving People Through Seasons of Life (33:44)

Connect with LaShonda:

lashondabrown.com

youtube.com/c/LaShondaMBrown

instagram.com/lashondambrown

Connect with Kayla:

Kaylahollatz.com

instagram.com/kaylahollatz

Connect with Akua:

akuakonadu.com

instagram.com/akuakonadu_

Subscribe to the Podcast:

Apple Podcast

Spotify

Navigating adult friendships

Review the Transcript:

Akua Konadu
Welcome to here’s the tea with Akua. That’s me. And this is a place where we have candid conversations about various hot topics. Each week, you’ll be hearing some amazing stories of everyday people like you and me, there’ll be spilling the tea and giving us an honest look into their lives. I believe that our stories are powerful, and when shared, they can change not only our perspectives, but also our lives. No topic is off limits. So have a seat and get ready because we are going to be making uncomfortable conversations comfortable.

Akua Konadu
Hello, everyone. Welcome to another episode of here’s a tea with a coup. And I am looking forward to this conversation, because I am joined by two of my closest friends. So I’m going to be real I’m not going to sugarcoat this, we are completely winging this episode. Like, I literally just

LaShonda Brown
lies were told.

Akua Konadu
They looked at me like, what questions are you going to ask? And I just looked at them, like, girl, you know better, like we’re just gonna wing this because we are all very close, we have a really, really fun relationship and friendship. And so today, that’s what we’re gonna be talking about is we’re gonna be talking about how to navigate adult friendships. I think, first of all navigating friendships at any age, from all the way to like preschool to adulthood, no matter what is already very difficult. But I feel like when you become an adult, it’s, you know, life just comes into play in so many different ways. And it can be really hard to maintain them. Manage expectations continuously show up, right, especially in life events. So I’m really glad that we are going to have this conversation today. So I want to take a second here to welcome two of my amazing friends Lashonda Brown and Kayla Hall. It’s so ladies say hello.

LaShonda Brown
Hello, this Hello. Alright, well, Shonda, let’s

Akua Konadu
start with you introduce yourself, share with us like who you are, how you’re making your impact in the world.

LaShonda Brown
Hi, friends, my name is Lashonda. And what I do full time is I create educational content to help people to leverage tech to grow their business without breaking the bank. And so I create content on a YouTube on Boostrap his device, and I also teach in person for training sessions around platforms like Canva so if you need Canva help, I am your girl.

Akua Konadu
Ah, hell if you need help with anything just fine. No relationship. Whatever you need, just go to Lashonda Yeah, everybody needs a Lashonda everybody needs a shot in their life. All right, Kayla, what about you?

Kayla Hollatz
Yes, absolutely. I feel like Lashonda always has such a polished intro. And I’m just not that gout. Um, I so I’m a website copywriter, and I work with entrepreneurs and Sass companies. I absolutely love what I do for a living and very different from Lashonda, who is always in front of a screen teaching other people. I am usually in the background writing for people and they put their name on it at the end of the day. So I’m kind of like the secret person behind the scenes that’s making things happen.

LaShonda Brown
But I’m going to give a shameless plug here because Kayla is she’s back understanding herself under selling her bread her words and did not know they were hurt.

Akua Konadu
If you go to my website and was like, damn, this is good. You have lots of things. So, yes, she’s absolutely underselling herself. She’s a phenomenal, phenomenal copywriter. And so I’m just really glad that we are all three here today. So let’s talk about friendships. Let’s talk about how all three of us have navigated of how we continuously show up for ourselves, like for ourselves for each other. Let me just give you a little bit here of background. So I met Kayla back in I think 2016 Way back when and I was sitting in a coffee shop trying to figure out what I wanted to do with my life with school. I was a college student at the time a junior pursuing a biology degree. I knew that like pursuing med school was not for me. And I was trying to figure what the next step was. So I’m googling and I find this blog post. So again, this just points to how strong Kayla’s SEO game was. But I find her blog posts and I absolutely love it and I go to her website and I see that she’s living this like beachy life. very beachy vibes her website, you know her, her dresses were so wavy and she just looks so relaxed and like oh my gosh, I’m gonna reach out to this girl because what she’s writing about that’s what I want to do. And come to find out I thought she was living in California come to find out she literally grew up in Andover, which is 20 minutes from Blaine where I grew up. And she also graduated high school with one of my closest friends. So that’s super crazy, but she has been with me on my entrepreneur journey and through that I started as a client and through that we have grown into Have a blossoming friendship. And then I met Lashonda through Kayla, because Kayla kept talking about Lashonda all the time. And I was like, Who is this woman? Because she’s talking about her ally. And you know me being nosy. You know, kind of also too little jealous, like who is Shonda? Like, who is she? Like me? So, but then lash out at you and I connected and it’s just been like, I feel like we’ve been friends forever. And so

LaShonda Brown
that’s how crazy is I was supposed to be a Caylus wedding to meet a COA. Yeah. And so she was supposed to be at my table, and then life happened. And so I was like, You know what, let’s just let’s just do a zoom call. Like, I still want to meet you, even though I couldn’t come to the wedding. And all it took was one zoom call. And it was just like, okay, Kayla. You can go now we’re good. like best friends.

Kayla Hollatz
Yeah, I remember it started with a coup. And I when I moved to Wisconsin for a year, we both were almost having like, separation anxiety as friends. And so we’re like, let’s just, like get together every week for a night virtually. And still feel like we’re getting together as much as we used to. And then when I kind of introduce, yeah, you Akua and then Lashonda together. Then when Lashonda joined us for a night it was like, oh, okay, like, this is just a night now. Like, it’s just the three of us. So that was always really fun, too.

Akua Konadu
Oh my gosh. Okay, so give a little background about how you two met.

LaShonda Brown
Oh, my gosh. So I actually knew Kayla, because of a Twitter when create lounge was the fake.

LaShonda Brown
Hashtag create.

LaShonda Brown
And so I just remember, I was like, one day, I’m gonna meet her. And what was so funny, I think we did like, one zoom call together. I have like the recording somewhere in the depths. But we had like, never met in person. And then we decided that we were going to leave the country and go to Canada in the woods for a week with no cell service with a bunch of women wanting to just find themselves. And we became like the best friends ever in the woods at camp. And so after camp, it was just like, you couldn’t separate us. We were on Marco Polo like practically every day. And that’s all it took. We just had to be in the same room. And it was the wrap. Yep.

Kayla Hollatz
And I got a shout out with Shonda because she opened up her private cabin to me because I had a cabin with a few other gals. And it was so amazing. But I was going through a whole lot of mess at the time. And so I remember, we were kind of coming down one of the pathways and everybody’s just like, alright, we’re just leaving the, the, the last speaker session or whatever, and I’m just bawling my eyes out like what is going on? Let’s Shonda without saying a word. She kind of just almost like hooks her arm around me and starts like, like guiding me wordlessly to her to her cabin, she’s like, you’re going to take 45 minutes for yourself, you’re going to take a shower, put on some good tunes, and like, I will come back. And then afterwards, I got my ish together. And I was like, let’s celebrate, let’s go. And I was dancing later that note. So like, it ended up being fine. But I feel like that’s a perfect representation of our friendship. And also just, again, if we’re talking about friendships, how, when you’re able to be vulnerable with someone, and then that person receives that, then you’re able to have just an absolutely amazing friendship.

Akua Konadu
Oh, I love that. And at some point, again, we all everybody needs a little Shonda. And

LaShonda Brown
I was like, girl, you are not okay. And I was like, No, I’m not. She’s like, I’m

Akua Konadu
not. Like, he just, she takes care of her people. She loves other people. She takes care of her people. So alright, let’s get into the nitty gritty here, cuz eight minutes. All right. So for you guys. How do you like what, especially with the pandemic, right? Like, we’re still in the thick of it. We’re going on the third year here. And I feel like it’s the way that we interact and how we navigate friendships has truly changed. So what has that experience been like for both of us? Okay, I’m going to start with you.

Kayla Hollatz
Oh, man, for me, I think especially because as I mentioned, I kind of moved during the beginning of the pandemic, and I also was getting married. There are a lot of transitions that I was going through in my life. And so because of that, you know, I really was able to see kind of how some of my friendships evolved with the fact that, you know, some of the people that I was maybe proximity wise, close to I wasn’t anymore. But one thing that I love about being in the business space is I feel like I’ve made so many friends through having an online business where it hasn’t necessarily been so specific to proximity to where I felt like I still was able to be just as close with people even being a state away. And then when I moved back, it just felt like I was kind of going right back into friends. So I feel like the pandemic has really taught me just that it really isn’t necessarily about the people who are physically close. It’s about who decides to show up for you through text messages through sending things. And you guys both know, I recently lost my dad and you guys were showing up for me in just the most amazing ways you guys sent me a bouquet on my birthday, because it was around the time that things were kind of going downhill with my dad. And then also just like paying for meals, sending things to myself and my mom, thinking of us. And so I guess it’s a little bit of a tangent, but I think it’s just so important to remember that, you know, you still have an opportunity to be incredibly nurturing and incredibly close to your people, even if you can’t necessarily hug them like you could before the pandemic or even if you can’t show up in the same kind of ways.

Akua Konadu
I think that is such You said so many good points in that tune. I think another just one thing I want to highlight quick before we go to util Shonda, it’s just, it’s really showing up, I think that’s just what’s so important, especially as we get older, especially as you just mentioned, like life transitions have happened, especially something as major as that, like, you know, I’m glad that we had that friendship or like something so major didn’t like, you know what I mean? Like, we have always just been there. And then something major happens. And we’re like, Alright, there’s no if ands, or buts like we are just here, and we’re gonna show up the best that we can. And I think that’s just such a really important piece with with friendships, and I think just any relationships is that no matter how hard things get for anybody, or how uncomfortable it is, if this is a person that you love, and that you cherish, you continuously show up. And so I absolutely love that point. What about you? Lashonda?

LaShonda Brown
I think one of the biggest things that I’ve learned during this whole season is that we have to really honor people’s perspectives on how they want to live their lives. Because the past few years, I mean, there have been so many friends that have been divided over just having a differing perspective on how to live their life, whether it’s how they’re going to respond to the news, or how they’re going to take care of their families, or are we keeping our kids in school or not in school? Are we mascara not masking all these different things, I think, really valuing the camaraderie and the love of community over being right, is just so vital for maintaining an adult relationship. Because at a certain point, you’re always going to find yourself in a position where you’re not in agreement. But if you can honor that person and say you are entitled to believe what you believe, and I love you anyway, moving on, then you can actually have a healthy relationship. But there are so many people that when, you know they met those opposing viewpoints, they just they broke off relationships, not just friendships, but family members are divided and all sorts of things. And so I think I’ve just learned to just go back to the essentials, you know, it’s like, okay, what you vote for what you believe what you take, don’t, I love you, I just I love you, you’re my friend. And the story. You don’t have to disclose everything to me, let’s move on, because we need each other. And I think that’s the biggest thing I’ve learned is that, above all, we need each other, and being able to have conversations about things beyond what’s in the news. How are you doing? How’s your heart? How’s your mind? What do you want to do with your life? How are you taking care of yourself? These are the types of questions that we should be asking each other and not divisive questions. Because, you know, we really need support to get through life, the older you get, and I think pushing people away, because they think differently, it’s just not the answer.

Akua Konadu
You don’t even have to be like a could be like a cool, you’re such a brat because I because I am guilty of that, like, truly I think, especially with 2020 when, you know, we had so many things happen? Well, for me, I think I just I took it so personally, you know what I mean? Especially in regards to certain things that are very, very, that I really value. And so a lot of times I think I struggled but it is like to your point, it is a very important thing, because we are humans at the end of the day, I have to still honor you, especially people that think very differently than me. But I did I’m not gonna act like here that I was this perfect person because I was like, okay, side i I’m good on you. And that’s and then like the door is closed. I’m not like I’m not saying that that is the right way to go. I’m just saying I know, I’m not the only person that’s done that. And so I love that you have touched on that. Because that’s something that I’ve been learning, especially this year to like in 2021 and especially now in 2022 of that there are people that think very differently than us and I still have to honor them instead Um, capacity, and it doesn’t make them this awful human being. Sorry.

LaShonda Brown
I think the biggest thing too is just, you know, you need to be able to recognize, if you’re, you know, in a toxic relationship, or if someone’s opinion is just so far from your beliefs that you just can’t coexist. I mean, I think there’s just a lot of discernment with that. So I, you know, I’m not saying like, Oh, I’m just gonna invite anybody to my house, but at the same time, you know, the odds of you being 100% in alignment with all your friends on every perspective, or it’s just not going to happen. It’s not gonna happen, you know? And so it’s like, well, what do you do when you have a beautiful, supportive relationship? But these things aren’t the same? How do you navigate that? Do you completely walk away? Or do you say, Hey, I respect you, I honor you. But that’s not how I see things and move past it. So I mean, I think again, it just takes a lot of discernment. And I, honestly, I think another thing that happened was, I was willing to let toxic relationships fade away during the pandemic, too, because everybody kind of reset. You know, it was like, we’re getting back to the essentials. If this relationship is kind of on the fence, I just let it fade away. Just bless it and release it, because I just can’t deal with unnecessary stress. And I think, you know, that was another thing that I just learned, it’s okay to walk away from relationships that aren’t really feeding you anymore.

Akua Konadu
Yeah, he gave some really good points, too. And so let’s talk about that. Because I think you see a lot of times to where some people have said, like, friendship, when a friendship ends, it’s like grieving a, like a relation, you know, like a marriage or, you know, a loss or something like that. So I feel like because, you know, friendships are, again, they’re really difficult to navigate. And so for me, I too, am releasing people as well. And so do you feel guilty when you do that? You know, what I mean? Especially if the other person how they may feel, and vague through their process. I don’t know if I’m making sense with the question that I’m asking here. But do you feel guilty when you are released those types of relationships, because I did, I felt so so guilty, but not saying I didn’t love this person, I love this person. But I just didn’t feel like the relationship was just serving me anymore, or them. Like I started to build like resentment, some, like weird resentment towards them. But I so I felt really guilty. So I like have the relationship last even longer, which wasn’t the healthiest. So I guess for you guys, like how did you guys navigate that? If you have ever ended, like or have ever ended a friendship? Like? Yeah, that’s the question I’m asking.

Kayla Hollatz
I guess for me a lot of what I’ve kind of done during the pandemic too. And what just feels healthier for the way that I’m wired is, when some buddy doesn’t necessarily show up again, in the way that I am kind of expecting, or if I feel like I’m putting a lot more into a friendship than what I’m being able to see from them for like years on end. Usually, what I try to do even before deciding to release it or not, is to recategorize the friendship, that’s kind of what I say all the time. And I think that that is a good way to still protect myself from putting in as much energy as maybe I was before. And just kind of seeing how that goes before I just kind of decide it’s almost this black and white decision. Like you’re either this close friend of mine, or you’re not a friend of mine at all. It just helps me realize like, okay, maybe this is more of like a friendly acquaintance, somebody that I can connect with here and there. But like maybe they’re not necessarily somebody that I’m sharing the day to day with. So I guess for me, that’s been an easier way for me to kind of just almost like test the waters with some of those friendships. Because of course, as we all know, friendships change from season to season. And I still think that it can be worth it to hang on to some of those people, but also to give each other a lot of grace, especially during the pandemic, because I have just found that there are some people that you’re going to hear from less. And some of that is just the way that they’re processing through everything that’s going on. And then there’s other people where it almost seems like they’re going to need even more from you. But in the end, if you can just have a conversation about things that’s great. I will say I have had a couple of relationships in the past that I kind of like you were saying, A Chua that I almost let it go on too long that I was feeling like I was putting so much more in and then it just kind of ended up dissolving away. It wasn’t something where either of us sat down, have a conversation and said, Hey, like there are certain parts of our friendship that aren’t necessarily feeling like they’re as like life giving as they were before. And so in that respect, I really wish that I would have had that conversation instead of you know, being a little anti confrontational because that’s a little bit more my jam. But you know, I think we all learn especially as we continue growing as adults, and I really appreciate when you are making friendships as an adult, you can really decide how much energy that you’re putting into something and hopefully you know, the That’s kind of friendships are the ones where you may give different types of energy, but it still feels fulfilling to both of you.

Akua Konadu
Oh, that was so good. LaShawn, do you have anything to add to that?

LaShonda Brown
Yeah, I mean, I think there’s just a couple different ways that relationships can kind of go. I mean, you have, you know, the type of relationship where, if you’re honest with yourself, you’re like, Okay, this relationship is bringing out the worst in me, like, I gotta get out of this, you know, and I think that’s like a different category. And I think in that way, you know, I’ve been forced to have some hard conversations with people, just because I noticed what was happening in my own heart. And so the only thing that I could do is just lead with truth, you know, and I think the thing we’re tempted to do is spend things and make things up. But like, if it’s truly not serving you well, and it’s affecting your mental health. And, you know, when you think about this person, it makes you anxious, or makes you stressed, or you’re complaining about it to other friends and all these, it’s like, okay, pump the brakes, like I have to be willing to, to prioritize truth over tiptoeing around the issue. And so like, I used to be non confrontational. And then I started getting corporate clients. And I was like, Oh, I’m good. I will, I’ll just say, you know, I’ll say the hard thing and say, Look, this is where I’m at, you know, I’m going to be honest with you, and just, again, leave with truth and not try to spin it. But I think other relationships, what you can do, if you find yourself in a relationship where you feel like it’s kind of like the season has passed, and yet you’re still in that relationship, you just stop initiating. You know, if that person really wants to maintain that relationship, then they’ll step up, and they’ll meet you where you are. But if all of a sudden, if you’re no longer initiating, and they no longer are responding, then you truly were giving too much. And it was a lopsided relationship. So you don’t even have to say goodbye, you just have to stop. And I think just having, having that giving yourself that freedom to just stop and say, You know what, I want to see how much they value this relationship and how much they want it, allow them to initiate and if they don’t just say, okay, they’ve blessed and released themselves, I just want to say,

Akua Konadu
bless it and release it.

LaShonda Brown
You know, so that’s, it’s lovely when that happens. So you don’t even have to have the conversation. But just be willing to say, you know, what, I’ve given a lot. And now it’s their turn. And if they if they step up, then that changes the dynamic of the relationship. But if they don’t, then you know, where you stand.

Akua Konadu
So many good points, too. And there’s like three things that I want to touch on based on both of your answers. Someone let’s talk about confrontation, because I think in relationships, friendships, any relationships in life, confrontations suck, and they’re hard, but they’re necessary. And I think when you’re able to have confrontations, it adds another depth into your relationship. Like, you know, I feel like it takes it towards a more intimate level that you didn’t see possible, especially with friendships. And so for you guys, how do you navigate confrontation in your friendships?

Kayla Hollatz
I think for me, it’s really difficult because I’m naturally a little bit more of a sensitive person. So I feel like, you know, Lashonda has been talking about discernment, that’s a huge thing for me, too. Something that Mama Hollis has always taught me is girl, you pick your battles, you know. And so that’s the same in all different types of relationships, but definitely in your friendships, too. And so I usually try to sit with something for a while, instead of reacting out of that maybe initial emotion or something that I’m feeling. And if it’s usually something that I’m sitting with, that isn’t necessarily feeling quite right, I always try to have some sort of a conversation I, I’m, you know, I’m somebody that sugarcoat some things, when I’m talking out loud, and that’s just a little bit my personality. So true, like, if I’m trying to have even just like a baby conversation with somebody with like, a little bit of like a sprinkle of confrontation, then that’s, that’s something I have to even just work myself up to. But I think at the end of the day, you have to realize that you do have a voice in your friendship. And, you know, again, I really tried to take a little bit of time to reflect and I’m such a journaler. Anyway, that all make sure that I’m doing all the things that I need to do to make sure that I’m able to see okay, is this just something I’m feeling in the moment? Or is this almost something that’s becoming a pattern, I don’t know if you guys have seen that in friendships to where but if something becomes a pattern over time, that’s where it can start to get under your skin a little bit more, it can start to get irritating. And sometimes the person may not necessarily even be aware of not only how you’re feeling, but also the fact that they’re doing that, you know, so I think you know, always having conversations with truth and love, like Lashonda is saying is really good, but it’s okay for the listeners who might be like me To where, like, we’re still kind of learning confrontation and kind of what that style looks like. And, you know, it’s still good just to remember that you have a voice.

Akua Konadu
Yeah, I think also, I wanted to point out y’all healthy confrontation, I guess Yeah, to say that like healthy confrontation confrontation that’s necessary to move the relationship forward, like not unhealthy confrontation. But I just giggled kale. I was laughing so hard. We like I like to sugarcoat things, because how many has my I’ve confided in you. And she will give me a sugar. Answer or response. I just look at her like,

Kayla Hollatz
what? I feel like, honestly, the words that come out of my mouth are so much nicer than my facial expressions. Like I always say that my, my like, face is so loud for me. So if you really want to know, like, what I’m thinking and what I’m feeling my face betrays me. So it keeps me honest.

Akua Konadu
It’s your face does, but I just felt like you just gave this very, like, nice and pleasant response. And I want you to know,

Kayla Hollatz
you’re, like, get amped with me. And I’m like, do it to me. Yes. See both sides? You’re like, No, you can’t.

Akua Konadu
That is so me. Oh, my gosh, okay, let’s, how about you, you already touched a little bit on it. But anything else you want to add to that, about dealing with confrontation in friendships,

LaShonda Brown
I think just check your heart. You know, I mean, if you know the heart behind why you’re confronting someone, if you know that this can help the relationship that it can push it forward, then it’ll give you more courage to have the conversation. But if like, if you’re just upset, or you’re angry, or you want to prove a point, or get justice, or whatever, then that may affect the delivery of the words that you’re going to say. And so like, usually I just go, like, just sleep on it. If you feel the same way, the next day, great. But like, oftentimes, like our emotions get so riled up, that if we react immediately, typically our immediate reaction is the worst one. And so it’s like just sleep, just sleep, if you can sleep. And I just, if I can step away from it enough to go like, Okay, let me give it a little bit. Let me check my heart. Let me not create more of a scenario by bringing all these emotions in there and just stick to the point like what is going on? talk specifically about that. We’re not attacking someone’s character, we’re really talking about an isolated issue, then it really helps. And I mean, that’s, I mean, I, how long 10 years, I’ve been married 10 years this August, and I’m like, Yeah, that’s marriage. But he says the whole like, Don’t go to sleep angry Gnosis if you need to go to sleep angry, do it to maintain your relationship, and then come correct after you’ve prayed on it. Like, you know, sometimes you just got to give it time.

Akua Konadu
Yeah, I mean, I’ll be honest, I think I still do struggle with confrontation. I still do. I can’t deny that I think I just told recently, like, my deliveries horrible, which is fair, because like, This person was not the first person to tell me that my family has told me that. And I think for me, it’s just again, like a realization of like, okay, these are some things that I have to work on, especially in competition, but I do have friendships, as well in my life, where they have taught me that to like, with so like, with them specifically with those relationships. When we have had issues, we now have sat down and actually talked about, okay, like, a cool, like, this is what I need from you when you’re feeling upset, like I need you to be able, so really being intentional of creating that safe space, because I do struggle sometimes with confrontation. So now, okay, like, I’ve messed up, yes, but the fact that you’ve had grace for me, I appreciate that. So now I know, okay, like when we have a confrontation of I’m feeling a certain type of way, I now know the way that I need to approach the situation. Am I perfect every time? Absolutely not. So I do appreciate the people in my life who have grace for me, because I’m still trying to figure that out. So I’m really glad that you both just like shared a lot of those things. Because I’m I do let I do allow my emotions to get the maximum 110% I can openly admit that I have. No, I mean, you guys know, you guys know. You guys are well aware. So I think it’s just again, like just such good things that you guys have shared that I hope if you’re listening that you can take away too. And if you find yourself where you just get very emotional in confrontation, just like no, you’re not the only one. We are all a work in progress. And relationships are hard. Doesn’t matter what kind of relationships. It is like they’re difficult. And so I just love both of your guys’s insights today. And so another thing I want to talk about is how do you manage, especially with expectations in friendships? Because I feel like too, that can lead to issues when people’s like if your expectations of the friendship are just not matching up. I

LaShonda Brown
think it’s really important to not push a release Ship to fast, whether it’s you know, a romantic relationship or one of your friends, like, take things slowly. And as things start to evolve, just check in with people, because I’ve noticed I get really eager, when I’m in a relationship, and I meet somebody once, and now they’re my best friend, and they’re not aware of their my best friend. And so sometimes that can be a bit uncomfortable when I want to take the relationship to the next level, and they’re completely oblivious to it. And so I think it’s just really important when you’re starting relationships, to be very clear about where you see things going. You know, maybe it’s, Hey, you know, I love hanging out with you, but I’m super busy in this season, I can’t call you, you know, once a week, or I can’t see you, you know, once a month or whatever. If you’re clear with the expectations in the beginning, then you don’t have to deal with the awkward confrontation later on. But if you just decide what the relationship status is on your end, and never communicated that to the other person, you can find yourself in a very awkward, uncomfortable situation where you feel like things are unbalanced. And it probably is because they are unaware.

Akua Konadu
Do you offer that this is a big thing in the creative industry? Or is it just me?

LaShonda Brown
No, I think it’s I think it’s a big thing. When people work by themselves at home. You know, we’re so quick to turn internet people into best friends because we crave community. Sure, you know, and so I think that, you know, I’m guilty of that where I’ve, you know, in relationship and like, oh my gosh, because I follow someone I feel like we’re best friends. And then I meet them in person. And I realize they are a complete stranger. Yes, you may know what their house looks like and what the kids look like, but like they don’t know you. And so I think the tendency is when your life is revolving around engaging on the internet, it’s easy to get super connected to absolute strangers, because social media makes us feel close. And like that whole concept of like the whole parasocial relationship, like it’s a real thing. You feel so connected, when people are vlogging, and Instagram stories and all these things, but we’ve got to guard our hearts, because just because you watch their social doesn’t mean they’re your best friend.

Akua Konadu
Mm hmm. That is such a good point. And I’m glad that you brought that up. And so yeah, no, I think that’s I think that’s super important to address because it’s it Yeah, it is interesting when, especially when you see a lot of these heavier influencers, especially in our creative industry, and how people interact with them. It’s it’s really interesting, and I think it can lead. I mean, sometimes obviously, it’s great interactions, but sometimes it can lead to disappointment as well, right? Because again, like they are, if you don’t know them outside of social media, they are technically a complete stranger. So I’m really, really glad that you shared that. So

LaShonda Brown
how do you guys,

Akua Konadu
I think this is a good question for all three of us, because we have all been through so many different seasons of life, and we still continue to maintain our friendship, especially with the fact that all three of us are still as close as we are. And just so y’all know, like leshawna does not live in Minnesota, y’all like she’s in Timbuktu, Virginia, so you may, Tim, Virginia girl. Oh,

LaShonda Brown
the mountains of red Tim, back to Virginia. Well, thriving, thriving

Akua Konadu
in Timbuktu girls, so whatever. Back to Virginia. And Kayla and I are in Minnesota, but the fact is, no matter how far away we are, and also to like tequilas point earlier last year, she was in Wisconsin for a year. But any tips and stuff that you want to share to people how you maintain friendships, relationships through major seasons of life? Hmm,

Kayla Hollatz
well, one thing is just quite literally being really direct and loving with people and saying, Hey, how can I love on you in this season? I think so many times in friendships, we feel like Oh, I’m this I’m so close to this person, I should just almost magically and automatically know exactly what they need and, and what they might want to hear from me and how often but kind of like Lashonda was saying there’s nothing more loving than just being able to check in with someone and say, Man, like, you’re going through a really tough season. I want to be here for you in any way possible. What what does that look like for you? And, you know, for for me, as I’ve been going through a very recent season of loss and grief. It’s been amazing for me to have people that say, Hey, how can I help? How can I be loving to you right now? Because I actually have been somebody that has wanted people to check in more. I know, some people would probably be going through a similar experience, and maybe wouldn’t necessarily want to talk as much. And I really appreciate the friends of mine where I get together with them and they say okay, how much of this conversation would you like to be able to talk about, you know, your dad who you lost and then it’s also okay, if you don’t want to talk about it at all, you know, so I think just creating that space and almost being proactive for your friends and starting that conversation. It can definitely bless both You.

Akua Konadu
I love that. I love that. That’s so good. What about you LaShonda.

LaShonda Brown
I mean, honestly, I think just giving yourself grace and permission to not if he just can’t, you know, I think that we oftentimes we push through, because we feel like, oh, I owe everyone all this communication. And there are days, where you just you need that space to think. And I think putting the pressure to always maintain relationships, no matter what happens in your life, can be detrimental and dangerous, you know, and so sometimes, like, you just have a bad day, you can just say, hey, having a bad day, or I think when you know someone well enough, I mean, it’s, it’s very funny, I use this app called groove, and it helps me stay productive. And part of the way that helps me stay productive is I do very similar things, especially in the morning. Like, I go to the gym, I get on groov, I check in and I do very specific things. So for me to go multiple days not doing that, without me saying a word. Those who are close to me know, okay, something’s a little off. And so they’ll just ask, Hey, is everything okay? Or are you good? Or, you know, sometimes I just won’t even show up on Instagram. And it’s just kind of like, I don’t need to announce, you know, it’s just rough right now. But people know, you know, and just give yourself grace to not have to always explain it, you know, and when you’re ready, then disclose what you feel like you need to but I think, I think that’s really helpful in different seasons, especially again, with the internet to not feel like you have to document every part of your life.

Akua Konadu
I love that both of those are just so important and so good. And I’m really glad that both of you touched on that. And I think I hope too, that if you’re listening that you have more clarity to and how to navigate your friendships and I hope that you feel what’s the word I’m looking for inspired, inspired. But this is episode two of how you just show up in your own friendships and relationships. And so both of you lovely ladies, if people want to connect with you further, where can they find you? Kayla, you go first.

Kayla Hollatz
Oh, man. Um, well, you can find me sometimes on Instagram and my website. I feel like I’ve been posting on Instagram less and less kind of like Lashonda saying if I’m not on Instagram, all that often it’s okay. No need to send an SOS but yeah, you can always Yeah, send me send me a message on Instagram or in my inbox all the good places. Oh, calm to like my website, my inbox. But Where?

Akua Konadu
Where? Where is the V inbox? All right. You covered everybody at WWW dot kala hollins.com. And you connected with her to on Instagram at Kayla.

Kayla Hollatz
This is my first podcast episode. Oh my god. Oh my goodness. All right, let’s Shonda What about you?

LaShonda Brown
Honestly, at this point, y’all just go to YouTube to watch the videos. Don’t skip the ads. Ministry money okay. Did you hear? I’m sure you can learn something just go to bootstrap biz advice.com. Or you can find me on Instagram at Lashonda M for money Brown. Perfect.

Akua Konadu
Oh my gosh. I love you both so much. Thank you so much for doing this episode. This was a blast. And thank you all so much for listening. And until next time. Thank you so much for tuning into here’s the tea with Akua. If you were loving the podcast, I’d be so honored if you go ahead and hit that subscribe button on your favorite podcast player and leave a review. This helps grow the podcast so more people can be impacted by the story shared by powerful guests like in today’s episode. Until next time, go make uncomfortable conversations a little more comfortable.

 

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