We had the good fortune of connecting with Tiffany Miller and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Tiffany, how has your work-life balance changed over time?
Since I started my business, FlyBlooms, 10 years ago, I’ve always had a full-time job alongside motherhood, higher education pursuits and a personal life. I did all the things all the time for a long time. I just went until I was exhausted which significantly affected my health and mental well-being. Finding balance always seemed impossible. I used to say yes to everything which meant sacrificing time with myself. Over the years, I learned to incorporate no into my vocabulary. If I don’t have the time, energy or joy capacity for something, it’s really easy to say no.
So in August, I took a leap of faith and said yes to full-time entrepreneurship. I knew I wanted to rest so I planned a two week vacation to Puerto Rico. I did not know that rest would look like two bouts of COVID, a two week migraine and long-term exhaustion from COVID. All in the first 90 days of entrepreneurship.
For me, balance looks like extending grace to myself for the things left to do and gratitude for the things I was able to accomplish in my day. It’s been an interesting journey to come to that. I used to work myself like a machine – a busy factory. I am embracing rest as a part of my balance definition while releasing my own expectation of always needing to do something.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I really enjoy creating from a place of joy which often manifests as a beautiful adornment like a hair bloom or skirt, a spontaneous painting, a poem or a freestyle on the mic with my favorite band Kase_Music. My creative journey began with an interest in poetry and cross-stitch. Poetry is all I wanted to read as a child and these are the types of books I gravitate towards now. I even knew at the age of 10 that I wanted to be an entrepreneur. I didn’t have the how figured out at the time but I do now as the Creative Owner of FlyBlooms and Co-Founder of The Bronzeville Collective MKE.
Collaboration has positively impacted my success as an entrepreneur. The Bronzeville Collective MKE is the shared dream of Lilo Allen (Owner of Papyrus & Charms) and myself. We are home to over 30 local Black, Brown, Queer and Ally owned businesses. Our mission is to highlight local talent and give creatives a place to thrive not only creatively, but financially. Our dream of owning a brick and mortar store would have taken longer to manifest individually. Collaboration WINS is our partnership mantra that has helped us grow our business, our partnership and most importantly, our friendship.
I’m really excited about my newest collection of poetry, “To Be Seen” which will be released in early 2023. It’s a collection of persistent poems that guide me to seeing myself in the full light of my purpose, my magic, and my joy. I still ask myself, “Who wrote all these poems?” because there was no intention to create them. They just came to me and told me to write them down. I’m excited to share the process and realizations with the world so others can see themselves in the full light of joy.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
We’d stop at Embody Yoga to get our mind, body and spirit right for the visit.
Here’s my must visit list:
Shopping: The Bronzeville Collective MKE, HoneyBee Sage, 414Floral, The Underground Makers Market & Kujichagulia Producers Cooperative in the Sherman Phoenix Marketplace
Food: Turning Tables – great food, drinks and vibes. Delicious Bites – amazing bites of everything sweet & savory. Funky Fresh Spring Rolls – tacos, spring rolls, Tuscan salmon, salads & more. PepperPot – Jamaican cuisine. Sam’s Place – coffee, breakfast, fish fry and jazz.
Coffee: A Bougie Cup of Joe, Stylepop Cafe & Colectivo Coffee.
Night Life: Wall Street Bar, Tropic MKE, Saint Kate, Allure, and Outsider.
Nature in general. The lakefront is absolutely beautiful.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Dominique Samari is an amazing connector of people and a curator of love. We met a few years ago and quickly developed a sister friendship. You know it’s love when you travel to your friend’s hometown and find yourself making banana pudding from scratch with your friend’s mother. Dominique has helped me grow in so many areas of my life. I admire all that she does and how she shows up in the world. An absolute “Good Egg” that is out here impacting lives, communities and organizations.
Dominique recently launched Kin Universe – “a community and an approach for creating connections. Kin is designed to facilitate independent, meaningful discussions that support building trust, understanding and empathy between two people from different backgrounds. The Kin Universe connects people and guides and holds space for conversations and connection, whether online or in person.” KinUniverse.com
In addition to Kin Universe, Dominique is an attorney, an equity and inclusive change strategist for her company P3 Development and a teacher guiding personal transformation with The Hoffman Institute.
Jamie Robarge Photography