When Ebony Combs walks in the room, she immediately gains the attention. Not because she is loud or demanding, but her presence just pulls you in. It was such a pleasure meeting Ebony for the first time last year at the Texas Conference for Women. We met as we were both a part of the press and we instantly bonded over who we were interviewing that day and of course, helping each other take pictures. The inspiration that comes from Ebony as she speaks shows that there is no question that she is a strong, successful, and amazing individual.
I'll let you enjoy her story below because I feel like I'll give too much of it away if I keep talking about her. Don't forget to connect with her on Twitter as well!
HOW DID YOU GET YOUR START?
I got my start by being chosen one of six women to become the first-ever national ambassadors for My Black Is Beautiful (MBIB)—a Procter & Gamble initiative designed to empower and encourage black women and girls. From this opportunity birthed a two-time best-selling author, speaker, creator of BARE Brunch - an initiative that empowers single moms, and CEO of iamebony, a women’s lifestyle consultancy that empowers women and positions them for purpose and prosperity.
WHAT RISKS DID YOU TAKE?
I've taken several risks, from leaving my child's father and becoming a single mom to starting my blog, but the most profound was the day I said goodbye to my corporate job in order to walk in my purpose. I had a false sense of security in an every two week paycheck that kept me imprisoned and thinking small; the day I took the leap of faith to walk in my role as a national Procter and Gamble MBIB Ambassador, my life became unrecognizable. I took the leap all while being a single mom, serving as my daughter's living example. She now knows what a tenacious spirit looks like because her mom showed her through action.
WHAT IS SOMETHING THAT SCARES YOU?
Something that scares me would have to be someone telling my daughter what she can't be or do because I had someone do that to me and I know how long it took me to get over it. I strive to positively pour into her each and everyday so that my encouragement far outweighs the noise of the world. I don't want her to fear her greatness but walk in it- knees knocking and all.
LOOKING BACK ON YOUR CAREER, WHAT WAS A MAJOR TURNING POINT FOR YOU?
Looking back on my career, the major turning point has been the moment I realized that I was good enough, more than enough, and was going to be who I was created to be. I had a light bulb moment when I stopped replaying the noise of the world on my mind's soundtrack and began to create my own music.
WHAT ARE THREE PIECES OF ADVICE YOU'VE CARRIED WITH YOU THROUGHOUT YOUR CAREER?
We were at our media dinner, hosted by Lisa Nichols, in New Orleans and I remember sitting at the table with her afterwards, telling her how I'd just resigned from my corporate position and was nervous about it. She looked me in the eyes and said, "Baby, you and your daughter are going to be just fine, trust me." I recall not knowing what that meant but feeling good just from her encouragement. I told her how I'd gone by Danielle (my middle name) professionally and my reasons why - she said, "Stop going by Danielle, dimming your light for them to be okay and you're dying inside." From that birthed iamEbony (I Affirm ME, Ebony) Danielle was buried on July 4, 2014 and I haven't looked back since.
- Always be true to yourself, there's no one like you nor can they beat you being YOU.
- Don't ever dim your light for small minds and small dreams.
- Never allow your bank account to be filled from one source of income. Always think multiple streams.
BONUS: Tell your truth. I vow to always tell my truth and see myself naked.
My biggest mistake was not listening to myself sooner.
**Quick add: Ebony and I will both be at this year's Texas Conference for Women, so we would love it if you would join us on October 15 in Austin, Texas!**