by Helen Murray
Quotations from DeLores Pressley:
‘Never, never underestimate your value;
Who are you putting on a pedestal? NO pedestals;
Ask, act and appreciate;
Decide, Commit, Action, Follow through = DeCAF.
It’s not who you think you are that holds you back. It’s who you think you’re not!
Hello DeLores Pressley, and thank you for the opportunity to speak with you! You have developed the most amazing ministry/profession in Business Life Coaching, appeared on every channel and station imaginable including Oprah Winfrey, won many awards, blown away any mild fancy that you can be in any way impeded in what you wish to achieve in life. I personally love the story of you becoming a top professional model for the larger sizes and refusing to assent to the standard requirements for modelling, but setting your own agenda! Please tell us what kind of experiences propelled you into this Life Coaching journey.
What exactly made you believe you could make it to the very top in a savage competitive world?
The world has constantly tried to make me feel like I was not good enough. As a young girl, I was constantly teased for being overweight. I thank God for a praying Mother and a Mother who would share Bible verses with me at an early age. She would read scriptures to me such as Matthew 19:26, “With God all things are possible.” She would tell me that I was beautiful and not to believe the negative things people would say about me. Between my late Mother’s inspiration and my faith in God, I know that I own the power to live my desired life even in a savage competitive world.
Once you began, did anything get in your way?
Even as an adult people constantly reminded me that I was overweight. In my second book, Clean Out the Closets of Your Life, I shared how I wanted to be a ballerina but the dance instructor would not permit me to take ballet because I was too fat. I wanted to be a ballerina more than anything in the world. Because of the values my mother instilled in me, I was able to overcome the negative thoughts that went through my mind when I was told “no” to my dreams.
During my junior year in high school I wanted to go to college, yet my guidance counselor told me that I was not college material.
When I wanted to become a professional model, I was rejected by model agencies over and over because society did not recognize plus-size women as models and no agency would take me serious about being a professional model. Subsequently, I started my first business; Dimensions Plus Size Model Agency. I am happy to report that I had this business for 17 years and the models were featured in national magazines such as Glamour, Marie Claire, Essence and Ebony. They worked for the finest fashion houses such as Saks Fifth Avenue, Nordstrom, Dillards and Dana Buchman.
All of the negative experiences became fuel for me to know that I could accomplish my dreams. Thus, I am committed thoroughly to being a Life Coach who will make the difference.
What sort of people might dare to approach this wonderful, larger than life personality for your expertise when beginning their great life adventure in business?
A person who wants to live the life God created them to live. A person who may already be on that journey or may be confused about exactly who they are, they should work with me. If they are serious about taking inspired actions, want a confidant, and a coach who becomes an accountability partner that will hold them to achieve their goals, then they need to call me now. It does not matter about their age; “dreams do not come with age limits.” I work with C-Suite Executives to small Business Owners.
Can anybody make it or must you find certain qualities before you commence work with them?
Absolutely! Everyone has the power to succeed; however, a positive mindset is crucial to a life of endless possibilities.
How do you move from insignificant mouse to the Life of the Party? What are the major steps?
Many people who feel like an insignificant mouse are afraid of something. Overcoming fears can help. Here are a few tips:
- Bring fear out into the light of day and acknowledge it. Be honest, tell the truth and be real about the fear you hold. When we hide our fear, we give it life. When we deny that it exists, we give it more power that it should hold. When we shine a light on fear and talk it through, we often find that it was not nearly as scary as we thought.
Honestly admitting our fear gives us the needed breathing room to deal with it. It opens the door to moving beyond.
- Own the fear. Take responsibility for your fear. Own up to the fact that it is your challenge. This is because too often we tend to want to blame others or “circumstances beyond our control” for the fear we are experiencing. Can people or circumstances be scary and fearful? Sure, but the control of that fear lies squarely in your lap. You determine its influence over you and your life.
By taking responsibility for our fears we begin to own the fact that we are the only ones who can change them. When we realize this truth, we are on the path to moving beyond fear.
- Let it out. Do not repress your fear. Speak, write, journal, run, hit something (not someone), scream – do something to let fear out of your body. When we express our emotions with intensity they begin to move through us. When we truly “feel the fear”, we start the process of lessening it’s power and hold over us. Make fear weak by becoming strong.
- Take action. Overcoming fear is not a spectator sport. If you want to let go of and move beyond your fear, you have to be in the game and not on the side. Think about it, what’s the worst thing that could happen if you started to speak up and be the “Life of the Party”? You will find that it can be a good thing to be more engaged.
How prepared is the younger generation for this kind of thinking? Many seem to think life should be served up to them on a silver platter because they deserve it, have studied for it and so forth. What basics are needed to acquire the right entrepreneurial attitude?
I believe we are raising a generation of children who feel entitled. We must teach our children that no one owes them anything. Start children young and teach them about entrepreneurship.
I am the President and CEO of a non for profit; “She Elevates”. The purpose of this organization is to help girls ages 8 to 18 start businesses, obtain funding and have opportunities to become exchange entrepreneurs in the homes of female business owners.
If you were training your own children for Life at the front, what would be crucial for them?
First and foremost, I would teach them how to have a relationship with God and use their faith to help them in life. I would teach the importance of respect which includes respect for themselves and others.
How is faith a business asset?
My relationship with God and my faith has absolutely been the key to having a successful business. I rely on the power of God to help me make decisions and discern people.
Where does your International Empire now stretch, DeLores, and what shape do you see your business taking in the future? Who do you want to contact?
I love that you describe my business as an International Empire. I feel so blessed to have worked and spoken all over the world including other countries such as Barbados and England. Most recent, I was the Keynote Speaker for the Turks and Caicos government.
In the bible, it reads, “Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it.” I have big visions and totally believe that they will come to fruition. I see a movement to empower and create a world of confident women.
I would like to contact Oprah again and work with her on a project to help young girls. When I appeared as a guest on the Oprah Winfrey Show, it was one of the best experiences of my life. Oprah is a role and business model like non other. I believe that we can work together to make a bigger difference in this world to become a better place to live.
Thank you so much, DeLores Pressley. You can further discover this unstoppable delight at her website, DeLoresPressley.com, by looking up DeLores on u-tube, and on Facebook. And Karen Haythurst, I appreciate your time and effort you provided in facilitating this interview.