I met Jade through Instagram back in December. She liked the last photo I published before stepping away from social media for the rest of the year. Almost a week later, I hopped on Insta and visited the profiles of those who had shown me love in my absence. Just 10 minutes before I clicked on her profile she published this photo-
One of my top business goals in 2018 is to cultivate relationships and support women in spreading the word about their businesses! I immediately left a comment letting her know I was going to send her a private message and within a few moments, we began an incredible conversation. We got to talking and couldn’t believe how many goals we had in common! We wasted no time in exchanging information and moving from an Instagram direct message to email where we could start getting to work. That led us to where we are today, nearly three months later. I’m so excited to introduce you to Jade!
She’s a business strategist and legal expert who supports women in building their business. While she’s a business owner now, that wasn’t always the case. Growing up, Jade knew that she wanted to pursue higher education as a way to avoid being a stereotypical product of her environment. There was a problem though. While attending college was an aspiration, she didn’t have the guidance or support she needed. Meanwhile university-bound hopefuls across the country had spent the first three years of their high school lives studying and preparing for the SAT and ACT, she didn’t even know it was something she had to take until her senior year! That meant she hadn’t spent the previous three years preparing for it. While that put her at a disadvantage when it came time to apply for college, her dedication to her studies paid off. Despite low test scores, her GPA secured her a full-ride scholarship to a historically black college.
Jade says from there she did what most people do, pursue the American dream. This included her getting married, having a child, and working to check off all of the boxes of “the dream”. The thing is, while she had a dream job at a celebrity law firm, she wasn’t living her dream. She couldn’t help but think there had to be more to life than that. So she started exploring things that made her happy. During her quest, she discovered that one of the things that brought her happiness and fulfillment was mentoring young women. It started out as something she did because she enjoyed it and soon found herself hosting vision board parties. That’s when she began to entertain the possibility of starting her own business.
Unfortunately, her husband couldn’t understand why she would choose to walk away from everything she studied and worked so hard for and didn’t support the idea of her turning her hobby into a business. Not long after their conversation, she found out she was pregnant and decided to part ways with the idea of starting her own business. Within the coming months, the direction of her future would change yet again due to unforeseen health complications. These complications ultimately prevented her from being able to return to work. She now found herself as not only a primary caregiver to her infant daughter but a primary breadwinner in her household with no immediate income. She knew that aside from living expenses there were medical treatments for her daughter who was in the NICU that would have to be paid.
Finding herself in this place of necessity is how her business was born. Jade’s reasons to move forward outweighed the challenges and subsequent excuses she could have easily caved into. She knew that she had to find a way to move forward and do what she could to help her family get ahead. Jade is such a great example of someone who has created her own luck in life. She’s a testament of the power of human resilience, persistence, and an inspiring example of what it means to be resourceful. She believes that
our experience prepares us for the challenges we face and the obstacles we have to overcome in our lives.
She told me that being on dialysis and having a chronic illness wasn’t on her list of goasls in life. However, it’s not something she can change and realizes that complaining about it isn’t going to get her where she wants to be. While this presents a unique set of challenges she had to find a way to work around it. One thing she shared that I found incredibly important was to face the roadblocks we encounter in our lives. She approaches them with a solution-focused mentality. This helps her ensure she’s not giving into the temptation of making excuses that can deter her from moving forward. Her drive to move forward knows no bounds as this quote she shared with me proves.
When life gives you lemons, make orange juice.
She shares that sometimes you just have to take what you have available and do what you can with it to defy the odds and create what seems impossible. Honestly, it seems like Jade has a lot of experience being resourceful and learning how to lean into possibilities instead of excuses. We all face our own unique set of challenges and obstacles in life which is why I’m so determined to share stories like this with you. It’s important to realize that we aren’t alone or the only ones who face challenges. I’m not sharing this for you to compare your struggles to hers but to be reminded that allowing yourself to be overwhelmed by the challenges struggles present isn’t going to help you move forward.
Don’t compare your story to anyone else’s. You never know what they’ve gone through to get to where they are. From the outside, it’s easy to see the business Jade has built and runs today but had you not read this you might not have realized what she’s had to go through to get to where she is. Seek to be encouraged by others and look at where they are as motivation because with fewer excuses, more resourcefulness, and taking action, you can get to where you want to be. I want to take a moment to thank Jade for opening up and sharing her story with us. I really appreciate the time she took to answer my questions and help me with this project to remove the mask of perfection put on by social media and give my community a glimpse of what life is like with the make up and filters off. Thank you for reading! I’d love to hear your thoughts on this Follow Friday post. Let me know if you found this in perfect timing and how it’s inspired you.
Jade is a business and legal strategist who helps women build their business on a solid foundation through strategic planning and global business development. If you’d like to connect with Jade or inquire about her services, you can find more details here. Be sure to get your complimentary Hobby to Business Strategy template while you’re there! Follow along with Jade’s story on Instagram and get business tips by following her Facebook page.