Pauleanna Reid, is an author, celebrity ghostwriter, mentor and speaker. Based in Toronto, Reid travels the world inspiring others and motivating those who thought all hope was loss. With her mentorship program, New Girl on the Block, she focuses on helping women and girls become their best selves.
Reid shared what moments in her life lead her to this career path:
What led you to mentoring girls?
I know the power of mentorship from first hand experience. My teens and early 20s were very rough years. Abuse, bullying and mental illness plagued me. Desperate for an escape, I tried committing suicide twice in my second year of college. I think it was just that I wanted an escape. I wanted to experience freedom. I no longer wanted to go through mental and emotional torture. At the time, that (suicide) was the easiest way out. By God’s grace, He spared me, not once but twice. I knew that if He is giving me another opportunity, I wasn’t going to waste it. –
Mentors have been a part of my life since 2009. They believed in me during a time when I barely believed in myself. I owe them everything for helping me build a voice, platform and the confidence to fight for my dreams.
Two years ago I launched New Girl On The Block, a mentorship program but way sicker than your average. We work with women in transition. Perhaps you are a recent graduate, new business owner, or you are going through a career transition or quarter life crisis, we are your cheerleaders, sisterfriends and the mentors who will construct your new normal in the areas of ballsy career strategies, life planning and personal branding.
It is extremely important. Every woman should have two things: A list of non-negotiables and a mentor. Support, whether emotional or mental is an essential part of success because on days when you want to throw in the towel, an accountability partner can use their words of encouragement to lift you higher.
What led you to motivational speaking?
There’s nothing more badass than being who you are. You do not have to settle. You do not have to live the lifestyle that others want for you. Some ways that I overcome fear is simply by maintaining the belief that everything I want is on the other side of it. It’s very true! Your hopes and dreams will not be achieved if you stand where right where you are. You have to continue moving forward. I try to build confidence by doing at least one thing a day that scares me. For a long time – it was public speaking. My family is filled with profound public speakers and pastors. So I knew that it was destined to be I just didn’t know when.
The day I dropped out of college and walked into the direction of my dreams is the same day, I quietly whispered to myself, “this is my life and my dreams are worth it.” I’ve always believed that if you want to do something badly enough you will teach yourself and that’s exactly what I did. I started a youtube channel, continued writing, reading and building relationships which ultimately helped me achieve incredible career milestones.
Today, I’ve accomplished everything from live television interviews to connecting with students during round table discussions and in the classroom, I speak on stages in front of thousands and travel across North America empowering women and girls to dream bigger dreams.
What is your advice for those who feel all hope is loss?
Silence makes the fight seem harder and a lot longer. So, the first thing I would suggest is to talk to somebody. The day I opened up was the day my life changed for the better.
Why is it important to help minority women? What issues do the face that may be unique?
My personal guide is to walk by faith, not by sight. I’ve always been a big dreamer and believer. I trust that if I take a risk, God will put out a safety net to catch me. As a woman; a black woman I have to work twice as hard and always put my best foot forward. The choices I make have a large impact on those who look up to me and I take the responsibility of being a positive role very seriously because the next generation cannot be what they cannot see.
What is your favorite part about your job?
The best part about what I do is having the ability to influence and lead a generation to see beyond the limits of their circumstances.
Your site delves into your live experiences, do you mind sharing how they made you who you are today and why you are proud of who you are?
Baby steps lead to bigger blessings. The journey we are on requires an incredible amount of patience. I’m still on that evolution, I’m still on that journey. I’m grateful that god handpicked me to go through all of the bullshit because now I have experience to draw from and I feel like experience is well respected when you talk to the youth. Also, talking about my experiences is a great healing process as well. I’m still on my journey of self-love. I have my good days and bad days. I deal with depression and anxiety but I’ve learned how to cope and manage it. I feel like I’m well on my way. There’s a quote I love by TD jakes, he says, “you will not go further than you think.” So for me it’s about dreaming big, thinking big, and knowing that I’m capable of big things. Put yourself in a position where you think you’re big and bold that’s when everything shifts around you to help you get to that next level. Turn your scars into stars.
Where do you see yourself and business 5 years from now?
In 5 years, I’ll be 34. At that point, I hope to slow down a bit so I can start a family of my own. Business will be running as per usual and the team I trust that the team I have in place will manage it effectively.
Additional thoughts or advice you would like to leave our readers?
Blessings have requirements. At every age. At every stage. Be productive.