H&M Striped Dress with Green Hem
Pink and Blue Summer Dress // Mimi Chenyao // Asian Barbie
Ringling Museum // White Abercrombie Lace Dress // Mimi Chenyao // Asian Barbie
Pink Lush Party Dress
Fake & Basic // Mimi Chenyao

The 5 AM Club

Navy T-shirt and Gray Joggers // Mimi Chenyao // Fake & Basic

Shirt and joggers | Molly and Zoey

A challenge was posed to me about a week ago: Could I get up at 5 AM, every single day, and start being productive right off the bat?

MY IMMEDIATE REACTION

What? No fucking way. I sometimes don’t even go to sleep until 5 AM. This “getting-up-at-freakish-hours” routine is one of those weird, dorky things that old people do.

MY SECONDARY REACTION

But I do have a full-time job, and hours aren’t flexible. I’m pretty tired when I come home from work. I don’t really have the energy in me to do stuff for the blog after I’ve been programming all day. I’ve been getting up at 6 AM to write my Morning Content Challenge articles — having that much shit done that early in the day is exhilarating. 5 AM is only one hour earlier, and let’s be real, staying out every night isn’t even that great. I should give this a try.

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Accepting Compliments Without Looking Like A Cocky Piece of Sh*t

Gracious Gardens Dress Mint Julep Boutique

SCENE: Nighttime. A party is starting and people are mingling about the house. MIMI is talking with a RANDOM GIRL near the front of the room. Both of them have red cups in their hands.

RANDOM GIRL

 … and I’ve seen you around campus. You always wear the prettiest dresses.

INNER MIMI

 Can I just say “thank you”? Does that seem conceited?

MIMI

Thanks! I got it when I was really addicted to shopping.

RANDOM GIRL

They’re all so cute. Seriously, I wish I could look like you and have the confidence to wear dresses all the time.

MIMI

[laughing nervously and taking long sip of drink] Thank you!

INNER MIMI 

Great, now I’ve said “thanks” two times in a row. Fuck. Fuck! I literally sound so fucking plastic right now.

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The Secret to Knowing and Experiencing Anything

Navy and White High-Neck Dress // Fake & Basic // Mimi Chenyao

Imagine that you’re in an old-fashioned room filled with magic potions that have the power to take you wherever you want, or make you whoever you want to be.

One will make you adept at understanding yourself. Another will make you a master programmer. Yet another will make you an Instagram whiz who churns out photos that seem to magnetically draw likes to them. Feel like meeting a public figure you’ve always admired, or going on an adventure to a place far, far away from your boring surroundings? These drinks have got you. Down one and you’re set.

The potions are free of charge, but there’s a catch. If you drink one, you’ll have to give up a certain amount of your life. It’s not too bad — only a couple of hours or so. In return, you’ll be able to have skills you’ve never possessed before or experience things you’ve only daydreamed about.

Would you drink the potion?

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Something’s Rotten in the State of Blogging

Black Crop Top and White Shorts // Mimi Chenyao // Fake & Basic

There seems to be an unspoken rule in blogging: You can be smart, or you can be pretty, but you can’t be both.

Inevitably, someone’s going to read that statement and be all, “you’re wrong! How dare you insinuate that fashion bloggers are vapid, or that smart people can’t be attractive?”

Relax, Max. I’m not talking about the bloggers themselves — I’m talking about their content. There seems to be a huge discrepancy in it. Blogs seem to either feature beautiful photos with some fluffy words (“Black crop top and white shorts: I did this shoot for a boutique a while back and was sweating like a pig the whole time while old people passing by gave me strange looks, haha!”) or feature minimalist themes with deep, thought-provoking essays and little to no photos at all.

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I’m Fake & Basic, and It’s Time to Get Real

Fake & Basic // Mimi Chenyao

“Honesty fuels every relationship worth keeping, worth saving. And it’s the one quality we can’t arrive at on our own. We can’t decide to be honest.”

– Erika Napoletano

With every new environment I enter, I go through what I’ve come to think of as the Fuck-It curve.

The Fuck-It Curve // Fake & Basic // Mimi ChenyaoThis curve represents how much BS I’m willing to take from people in said new environment. My tolerance is pretty high at first. For example, if I were at a new school and someone made a comment that I disagreed with, I would politely brush them off because hey, I was new, and I didn’t want to rock the boat quite yet.

Over time, that tolerance would slowly melt away until I reached the critical point where I’d crack, say “fuck it”, and stop pretending to be “nice”. I’d be loud and outspoken about things that excited me and things I couldn’t stand. I’d confront people and keep them accountable for their actions. I’d cause scenes in public if I had to.

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I’m Rebranding My Blog. Here’s Why.

Why I'm Rebranding My Blog

Everly dress

When you have a really girly style but enjoy primarily “male” activities, you get used to being looked at like you have two heads.

You get accustomed to having to break an invisible barrier every single time you meet someone new. You’ll have to shatter their preconceived notion that you’re fake, basic, superficial, or incompetent, and that yes, you do enjoy coding, lifting, business strategy and <insert other male dominated thing here>, despite that bright pink dress you’ve got on.

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5 Bad Habits I’m Waving Goodbye To Forever

Lilly Pulitzer Antonia Dress in Fiesta Pink // Mimi Chenyao // Asian Barbie

Dress from Lilly Pulitzer

You know those things you do that have always bothered you in the back of your mind, that you don’t really do anything about?

Things like having a messy room, and continuing to squander around in the filth rather than taking a proper hour to clean everything up. It’s almost as if there’s a little voice in the corner of your mind that’s constantly pestering you — clean up your room! Clean up your room! Clean up your room!

Every single time I ignored that little voice, I felt a tiny bit bad about myself. Sometimes, that feeling would turn into an irritated mood that lasted all day. If I continued to do nothing, the stress would build up, and eventually I’d be extremely aggravated … for seemingly no reason at all.

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The 90-Day Passion Project

Black Bralette and Flowered Shorts // Mimi Chenyao // Asian Barbie

The first big challenge in my 52 Weeks of Momentum course has arrived! I have 90 days to complete a “passion project” of my choice.

One could argue that Asian Barbie is my passion project, and they would be completely right. I love this site like an entrepreneur loves her startup, and treat it as such. Thus, my 90-day passion project for the course has to do with growing an aspect of this site.

The goal of the project will be to get 2,502 daily blog readers by March 31, 2018, the official deadline for the challenge. One of my larger goals for 52 Weeks of Momentum was to gain 10k engaged readers by December 2018, and this is basically the three-month version of that goal:

10,000 readers in 1 year / 12 months per year = 834 (rounded up) readers in a month

834 readers per month * 3 (3 months for 90 day passion project) = 2,502 readers in 3 months

This means that I should be aiming to attract and retain 27.8 new readers per day. Since 0.7 of a person is … concerning, we’ll round that up to an even 28 new blog readers per day. Twenty-eight people is around the size of a large elementary-school class, or the total amount of employees at a small company. It’s a manageable number that I am confident I can achieve.

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How to Schedule Your Time Effectively

H&M Striped Dress with Green Hem

Dress from H&M

If our time is our true currency, what would our expense statements look like?

The sad thing about time and energy is that, even when we recognize it as invaluable, we’re unable to save it for a better situation or pile it up for when we need more. Spend a morning checking social media and suddenly you’re at lunch, wondering how the hell it got to be noon already. Spend a day putting out small fires and suddenly you’re in bed, wondering why you didn’t do a single productive thing in the last twenty-four hours. Spend a life not paying attention to what you’re doing, and suddenly you’re past your prime and having a midlife crisis because you were too busy checking social media and putting out small fires to do what you really wanted.

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Every Time You Look at A Meme, You Lose 30 Seconds of Your Life

Blue and White China Pattern Swing Dress // Mimi Chenyao // Asian Barbie

One of the scarier things I’ve realized lately is how little time each individual has to make an impact on society.

It’s so easy to think that we’ll be our current young and vibrant selves forever, so we don’t treat our time with respect — we go shopping or play video games just to pass the time. We hang out with people we don’t really care about. We take substances because we’re bored. We spend hours on the Internet tagging our friends in memes and watching those pointless videos that pop up on our Facebook feed.

We do this stuff because it’s easier to be in a state of slight apathy than to make the leap to living fulfilling lives. Figuring out what you want in life, and then having to jump through every hoop to get there, can be both terrifying and exhausting. This is especially true if you have existing obligations — for example, if you work a demanding job for eight hours a day, you may be so tired when you get home that all you’ll want to do is chill out.

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