Behind the Brand is a Pretty Entrepreneur series. We pull back the sheets and give you more insight into the people behind the brand. We are blessed to feature Nyeesha D, Williams. I truly believe that we find healing and purpose in our story and Nyeesha embodies that statement. Check out our Q&A below.
Hey Sis, We like to get all up in your business for “Behind The Brand” it gives others a peek inside. Can you state your name, where you are from and tell us a little about your business/work, and are you a full time entrepreneur ?
Ha! Good thing I’m as transparent as they come. I don’t mind you being in my business, quite frankly me telling my business is exactly why I’m an entrepreneur. My name is Nyeesha D. Williams and I am a Philanthropic Inspirer and Counselor who inspires and motivates teen girls and women through counseling, artistic expressions and entrepreneurial consciousness. I am a full-time entrepreneur, a mother of three, a wife and a hustler. This hustling mentality came from my birth place of Newark, N.J. #BrickCity
Its amazing that you have two active schools in Africa and one school in Los Angeles. Tell us a little more about that and why it was an important project?
Girl, thank you. I still pinch myself at the thought of being able to achieve this. Oprah wasn’t built in a day, but I sure do feel like her at times. Haha… In all honesty my intentions were to just build something ‘good enough’ for the Newark kids around my neighborhood. As time went on, I started noticing people or better yet my community wasn’t as helpful as I would have liked. I started in my dining room in my two bedroom apartment and it grew before I knew it. Before my schools were officially signed off on, I helped girls in Africa through my 501©3 non-profit organization called, “Sacrit Devahood Incorporation”. Sacrit Devahood Inc was all about empowering young girls ages 11-19 through performing arts, international connections and financial literacy. I’m an Eastern Star so one of my Masonic brothers was watching the work that I was putting in and connected me to some people in the Ugandan Parliament. Years went by, my goals changed, my vision was clearer, I loss family and friends, I went into isolation and I came out with a whole new game plan. The school and the organization is passion driven. This is my life! I eat, shit and breath helping our young girls and now women.
I am a rape and molestation survivor. I grew up around gangs, almost been killed (multiple times), watched family members shoot-up (you can choose whichever way because I witnessed both) and a list of other travesties. Although my mother had me at 14, I swear she bust her behind to keep me busy. Singing and Dancing kept me from committing suicide. Like for real for real. I made a vow at the age of 23 to give back religiously. I basically wanted to help the little girl inside of me who never got a chance to get that little bit of assistance that she needed. The idea of my non-profit came about August 2008 and my schools were set in stone May 2015. It’s still a work in progress and I still need as much help as possible at times, but I’m covered. I’m blessed because we are making it happen. My school in Los Angeles came about because I no longer wanted my daughters in public or private school anymore. I wanted to un-learn them from what they were being taught. I believe they needed to escape that institutional set-up and prepare themselves for the real world with honest and wholistic teachings. I started receiving emails from everywhere from mothers wanting the same and now here we are in the process of our building fund.
Your story is amazing... I believe that motivators still need motivation daily/weekly. You motivate teen girls and women through counseling, but who/what motivates you?
That’s easy. My children are my number 1 form of motivation. I’m honest with them, so the moment I fall short they dig in my ass (respectfully). We are one another's accountability partners. My oldest daughter started her own cosmetic company called GlamCrime and she goes IN. When I’m tired as all hell and I want to just escape, she reminds me why I do what I do, or just watching her handle her business all alone and in her room or going to meetings at 15 years old…How dare I not get motivated? Then there’s my husband ( MY BIGGEST HEADACHE)… Girl don’t let me dare doubt myself in front of him… Another dig in the ass. Lastly, seeing how far I’ve come is motivation to keep me going. Especially when I was in one of my darkest hours, having to bury my son. I cared about no one else. Not my image, my life, my daughter or anything. I drank so much ( so many blackouts), had sex with anybody and everybody I wanted to and said forget about my goals. It was dark and it happened fast, but one day it hit me. I was becoming my mother and I had to stop immediately.
Most entrepreneurs struggle with balance. I have my own thoughts on balance as it pertains to entrepreneurship. What does your day look like and do you believe in a balance between personal life and business life?
Of course I believe in it. 11-11-17 I am actually giving a free workshop for women on this very topic in Los Angeles. I studied Ayurveda Medicine for years. I took a quiz to figure out how and when I should start my day and finish it and I try to live by that. My family comes first no matter what. I only allot a certain amount of hours for business, I give myself to my husband when he needs it or when I’m feeling the need to be loved by him. I don’t separate my lifestyle from my kids really. If I’m working, we all working at the same time towards our businesses. I teach them about hard work so when we want to play none of us feels guilty. If I need to step out with my friends they know that mommy put in the work so if she’s going out then that means she needs it. My husband is always on tour so when we get together and I have a deadline, I handle the deadline work right away then shut everything else out.
We hear about the wins people have before the struggles. Can you tell us some of the struggles that you are experiencing today or even in the last few months?
I had my son four months ago, today. My struggle for this past year was having to be on bedrest, canceling my tour, not being able to tend to my daughters 100 percent, learning how to ask people for help and depending on them, not being able to travel. I was a mess, but clearly I was put down for a reason. I couldn’t physically move, but mentally I was working.
What has been your greatest achievement so far?
Wow, I guess as cliché as it sounds, I would have to say having healthy children, but having a teen who has a business, not worried about sex and respectful all at the age when I was carrying her and being homeless.
Let’s put some positive energy into the atmosphere tell us two major goals you have for yourself personally and professionally?
Over the next two years I want to be seen as honest, transparent, raw and authentically me. Expand my schools and counsel more women. Personally…I’m trying to get this range rover my husband keeps telling me I don’t need. lol
For the woman who feels like she is not motivated at the moment what advice can you give her if she is reading this right now? CALL ME!!! lol
This is Behind the Brand so we want to know when you’re not working what do you like to do? Eat? Listen to?
I love to read, listen to music ( Aint nobody better than Lauryn Hill), eat as healthy as possible but load up on snacks when I don’t feel like caring. I’ve been following Dr. Lam and his teachings on eating based off your blood type and its doing me some justice.
Whats next for you , any upcoming events, things we need to look out for?
I’ll be on tour over the next two years with my “Sip & Become” workshops which resembles my 3 part book “Herstorys- Her history told through the eyes of her true self” which helps women RELEASE who they thought they was or need to shed | TRANSFORM into who they would like to become | and MANIFEST the life they demand to live. I’m forcing women to find their truth within their story and helping them accept who they are and moving on all while sipping wine and eating fine dining. There’s a lot of writing, painting, crying and laughing. I’m bringing along my two sisters @nikkiesthoughts and @artsigned_pfitts (check them out on Instagram). We are starting in Jersey, then California, D.C., Haiti, The Bahamas & more to be announced later.
Make sure to follow Nyeesha on all her social media outlets @nyeeshad and check out her website NyeeshaWilliams.com . We thank you Nyeesha:)