We had the good fortune of connecting with Charlene Evans and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Charlene, how has your pespective on work-life balance evolved over time?
Work life balance over time has changed drastically. When I was younger, I would work recklessly long hours, disregard breaks and eat anything that I could get my hands on with no regards to my health. When you’re younger, the effects of those choices are not readily seen or felt. For example, how I carried body weight working long hours and getting a workout in here or there but not on a consistent basis and trying to maintain a mentally demanding job became a harmful combination. As I got older, I had to really balance appropriating work and my health so that I could enjoy life to the fullest. I have really seen a major difference in my productivity and overall mood if I’ve done my workout and taken care of priorities verses optional things that could wait. I am more conscious about my work life balance being off when I find myself being stressed easily or my focus becomes short which causes me to become distracted and less productive. If I have worked overtime for multiple consecutive days, then my off time is not spent being as productive as I would want it to be or fulfilled with things I want to do because by this time, I am exhausted. My days now are handled with intentional work and life breaks. I utilize my mobile device to set alarms for important activities and I invested in an apple watch that helps me with hitting certain health goals which is important for my well being as it relates to my job and life outside of work.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
~I’m a Poet and Motivational Speaker who uses her VOICE to create ART ~I believe what sets me apart from other artist is my voice….to describe my art, you will hear it first in the sound of my voice. Chiccy Baritone: The root of Chiccy is ‘Chic’~ in appearance, poetic delivery and theory. Baritone because my voice is deep naturally and when I speak, I speak with God’s authority. My background is Electrical Engineering and i currently work in a fortune 5oo company as a Project Controls Specialist. I exercise both my right and left brain~ I’m artistic and technical ~I’m most proud of being chosen to participate in TEDxGreenville in 2014 as a performer. It was such a cool experience! I’m excited about being a first time author and producing 2 books and a journal within a year! ~I arrived professionally where I am today because I was not afraid to take a chance on trying different things within my career! I have lived in several states with my job working on short term and long term assignments which helped broaden my career path and landed me in Project Controls after working as an Engineer. It definitely came with several challenges especially being on the road and away from home for several weeks at a time but I met amazing people along the way and developed different work skills that allowed me to propel professionally. What I want the world to know is that there is nothing more motivating than believing in yourself! You can be anything you put your heart and mind to at any given point in time. Never believe in the lie that its too late. I have maintained a desire to use my voice to change lives one person at at time through poetry and public speaking. I didn’t wait for someone to tell me I was a poet, I begin using my voice in pageants in high school and college then I begin to journal all through college. Once I graduated, I visited a poetry open mic and the rest is history! Self – Expression, World – Outreach and People – Progression is my hearts desire and I’m grateful to God for this ‘gift’. It is the ‘gift’ that keeps on giving!

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Arrive Friday: Friday morning arrival grab breakfast at Bantam + Biddy (love their Southern Breakfast platter) Walk it off at Piedmont Park Papi’s Cuban & Carribean Grill for lunch – great jerk chicken and sides Head to Atlantic Station to shop, pick a place for dinner and catch a movie Saturday: Breakfast at the Atlanta Breakfast Club Visit the Aquarium Visit National Center for Civil and Human Rights MLK National Historical Park Painted Pin for Bowling Sunday: Worship Service at House of Hope Atlanta Brunch at Murphy’s – Virginia Highland Krog Street Market for Ice Cream Walk the Beltline Trail towards Ponce City Market Dinner at Two Urban Licks (salmon chips are a must)

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
YES! I must shoutout my Toastmasters Club “The Stammering Churchills” which are a part of Jacobs Engineering where I serve as the V.P of Public Relations. My fellow officers and club members continue to be such a huge support to me in all of my endeavors! Being a part of this club and having a platform to build my speaking skills and develop great relationships have meant a lot to my personal and professional growth. Dr. Maya Angelou – She is what I call my ‘forever mentor’ as it relates to writing and poetry. I have admired and studied her work over the years. I aspire to build my voice through poetry and public speaking in a way that would have a world wide reach just as she did.

Website: www.chiccybaritone.com
Instagram: chiccybaritone77
Twitter: chiccybaritone
Facebook: chiccy baritone ~ poet

Image Credits
Hope Ballenger Photography Smith A Lee Photography