Hey Friends! Last month I was interviewed by the lovely Ayanna Jordan, founder and empowerment coach of The Phoenix Rising Collective, for the “She Makes it Beautiful” series. “She Makes it Beautiful” is a professional development series that features women entrepreneurs who share how they started their own businesses. For those of you who are not yet familiar with The Phoenix Rising Collective, you will definitely want to check out this empowering website! PRC creates coaching seminars and training that supports women’s professional growth in leadership, entrepreneurship, and passion-filled work. Ayanna and I connected via social media and bonded over the fact that we share the same name, spelled the same way :) . It was a true honor to be interviewed by The Phoenix Rising Collective. Through her work, Ayanna provides women-centered workshops that help transform the lives of participants by focusing on putting self love into action. She even provides free bonus worksheets developed from each interviewee’s interview to help you get your dreams off the ground. (click here to get the worksheets from my interview). Her life’s work could not be more in line with my philosophy and desire to encourage women to believe they can, and to strive to create the lives they want to live. Here is a snippet of the interview below:
o o o
This SMIB interview is with luxury handbag designer and artist, Ayanna Listenbee, owner of Ayanna Listenbee Collection and creator of The Lookbook Philosophy.
Ayanna is definitely a creative force to be reckoned with – a determined business woman with impeccable style and a strong will to fulfill her God-given purpose; it’s awe-inspiring. I hadn’t met her before this interview, but social media can most certainly be a positive space for connecting with like-minded women on a mission to do great things in the world through passion-filled work. This is most certainly the case with Ayanna, so by the time we finished the interview (which felt more like two friends catching up after a long hiatus) we both agreed that we should have been having our conversation over coffee…even though we live miles apart!
She most certainly embodies the meaning of her name, Beautiful Flower, and as you can see from her handbags, she’s an entrepreneur that creates from a soulful place that is in full bloom.
What sparked your interest to become a designer? How did you know this was the avenue you wanted to take?
I’ve always drawn. I’ve always made things and was creative as child. It was encouraged a lot by my father who painted sometimes in his spare time. He eventually became an art dealer. I never thought about pursuing it as a career. I never took it seriously as an option because I didn’t think it was something that could sustain me financially. You know, the funny thing is when I look back I never heard that from my parents; it was just something that I picked up along the way that if you’re in the arts you’re not going to make money. You’re going to be struggling. I can’t say that it’s been dollars falling from the sky since I started, but I went away to school and had many majors. I was a ballet major at one point – which didn’t last very long. I was also a graphic design major, communications, and then long story short, I ended up as an English major. I was about to graduate with a semester left and I thought, “This is not what I want to do. I’m not happy.”
Click here to read the full interview . . . and check out the PRC website. There are interviews from some amazing women that are sure to inspire you in your journey, complete with free bonus worksheets to use as a personal toolkit to help you push your dreams into reality. Enjoy!