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Kenya Lee’s Journey to Emotional Greatness & Self-Love

Kenya had experienced many traumas, from physical, emotional and sexual abuse to a premature labor and stillbirth; but when she held her breathless child in her arms, she knew she had to make a change. With therapy, journaling, and affirmations she was able to turn her suffering into triumph and help others do the same. But where do you go when the trauma comes from within?

Show Notes | Transcript

We’re here to live a good life, we’re here to live a happy life. And whatever resources are there for us to do that, we have to take advantage of. – Kenya Lee

Meet Kenya Lee, a multifaceted woman who has transformed her life through her experiences as a registered nurse, artist, and author. Kenya’s passion for women’s empowerment has led her to become an expert in guiding women through self-awareness and mental health challenges. Her book, The Path to Emotional Greatness Yielding to Personal Transformation, is a testament to her resilience and determination to help others. In conversation with Gloria Grace Rand, Kenya shares her trinity strategy in overcoming trauma and developing healthy coping mechanisms.

In this episode, you will be able to:

  • Triumph over trauma by harnessing the power of counseling and mental health resources.
  • Discover the essential components of emotional, physical, and mental wellness balance.
  • Shatter the stigma surrounding mental health and therapy and embrace self-care.
  • Unleash the healing potential of personal stories for yourself and others.
  • Master the Trinity Strategy to build a resilient coping toolbox.

Related Live. Love. Engage. episodes you may enjoy:

Lessons from Trauma Work with Sarah Brassard
Sarah explains in this episode why we naturally deny our trauma, how to start facing your trauma, and practices that can help you in your recovery journey.

Clutter, Trauma and Beliefs with Krystal Holm
In this interview, Krystal shares how clutter affects your physical, mental & emotional well-being.

Turn Post Traumatic Stress into Growth with Cathay Reta
Cathay shares how her decision to walk the Camino at age 65 helped her overcome trauma.


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Live. Love. Engage. Podcast: Inspiration | Spiritual Awakening | Happiness | Success | Life


00:00:00 – Gloria Grace Rand – You’re listening to the Live Love Engage podcast. On today’s show, my guest shares three tools that can help you triumph over trauma. Stay tuned.

00:00:15 – Gloria Grace Rand – I am Gloria Grace Rand, founder of The Love Method and author of the number one Amazon bestseller, Live. Love Engage – How to Stop Doubting Yourself and Start Being Yourself. In this podcast, we share practical advice from a spiritual perspective on how to live fully, love deeply, and engage authentically so you can create a life and business with more impact, influence, and income. Welcome to live. Love Engage.

00:00:50 – Gloria Grace Rand – Namaste. I am so glad to be with you for another edition of Live. Love. Engage. And I’m looking forward to our discussion today with the wonderful Kenya Lee, who is joining us today. And I’m going to tell you all about her. She is a registered nurse, she’s an artist, she’s an author, she’s a women’s empowerment expert. And she assists many women to navigate their self-awareness and obtain optimal mental health. And she’s got a story to tell, which we’re going to get into in a moment, but she sort of documented her story in a new book called The Path to Emotional Greatness Yielding to Personal Transformation, or otherwise known as The Path to Egypt. And that all of that emotional greatness yielding is the word Egypt, which I love acronyms. And so I love that you did that. So first off, I want to welcome you, Kenya, to Live. Love. Engage.

00:01:56 – Kenya Lee – Thank you so much, Gloria. It’s a pleasure being here. I’m so excited to talk about everything and have a great time with you.

00:02:06 – Gloria Grace Rand – Absolutely. Yeah, we are going to do that and we’re going to be talking about a lot of stuff. She and I were discussing a little bit before we started recording the podcast today and just about some of the things we have in common. A shared, shall we say, of where we grew up similar. And she’s also involved in all sorts of amazing things and projects. But I like to start off the podcast usually with asking our guests about what the journey that got you where you are today and in particular, starting off it sounds like I think nurse might have been your first part of your career, but what led you to eventually become a women’s empowerment expert?

00:02:54 – Kenya Lee – Well, Gloria, it’s one of those situations after you are able to master something or you go through a tough time, you want to give back and you want to see the next person that is going through that same tough time have a positive outcome. So for me, I had went through so many challenges as being a young teen troubled, very low self-esteem. And so that landed me in a lot of pitfalls of life. And growing up in the Detroit area, as you’re familiar with, can be pretty sticky in terms of urban culture. And I was able to thankfully navigate my way out of that from an emotional standpoint. And so me wanting to empower others is simply me wanting to give what I’ve learned over the years. Because there was a point that I thought that there was no coming out of this crazy mindset that I had of not feeling worthy, not being desirable, not being desirable of love, genuine love. So, my passion for giving to other women is due to having such a tough time coming out of it myself, and I know that it’s possible.

00:04:25 – Gloria Grace Rand – Yeah, that seems to be a very common denominator in a lot of people’s stories. When we do have the opportunity to overcome some challenge, it does then make us want, or at least for most people, I think they do want to be able to give back and to help others. So, can you share with us a little bit about what are some of the challenges that you faced specifically growing up that you did have to overcome?

00:04:55 – Kenya Lee – So I was a young lady that was raised by a single mom. My father was not existent in the household. He was outside of the home and really not there from a parental standpoint. Of course, I knew who he was and I would see him from time to time. But that void for me in terms of a father figure really impacted me in a negative way. So when I went on to have intimate relationships, boyfriends and that sort of thing, my concept of a man was completely distorted because I did not have a real mold and a real foundation of what that really was supposed to be. So, it led me into some pretty destructive relationships, one of which was pretty significant and lengthy, where there was domestic violence. So, I went through a lot of abuse emotionally, physically, sexually, and just not loving myself. When you come up sometimes and it affects people different ways, Gloria, some people say, oh, well, I didn’t have my dad with me and I came out just fine. Well, that’s wonderful for you, but in some instances it really has an impact on a woman’s life. And for me, I was very, very sensitive to that and so it distorted how I looked, my outlook on things. So that is how the ball, so to speak, got rolling in terms of me not being at my maximum potential. And going on with having these sorts of relationships was due to my wanting a father figure in a distorted kind of way. So, I chose guys that were the possessive or man’s men, the macho kind of guy, just because subconsciously and you don’t know when you’re going through it, you’re looking for that father, that missing component to quench that thirst. And so, with that came a lot of trauma, as I said, the physical and emotional trauma of just not choosing the correct person. But aside from that, not putting myself as priority, I always was secondary in the equation. And that’s because I chose to be that way out of inability of loving myself and having a real understanding of who I really was.

00:07:42 – Gloria Grace Rand – What happened to start leading you to be able to start valuing yourself and to start loving yourself? Because obviously you do now because you’ve written a book to be able to help others. So somehow you were able to find that recipe and to be able to turn things around. What was that for you?

00:07:59 – Kenya Lee – I’m glad you asked. That was the turning point for me. So, it was several years ago I became pregnant and I struggled with, do I want to have a child right now? I was pretty young, but yet grown. But my relationship in which the child was conceived under was less than ideal, to say the least. That’s where all of the abuse was happening. And so I proceeded to go through the pregnancy. Okay, I’m going to make the best of this, looking forward to having this baby, and I’m going to figure out life as it goes. And what happened is in my 23rd week of pregnancy, I went into premature labor and my water broke and baby was so small. And at that time, back then, things are a little different now and medical science has evolved where it’s a little more conducive for children to make it. But back then I was told, look, this is not going to be viable. She’s not going to make it. And so, I had to give birth. I had to actually go through the entire motion of giving birth and holding a child that I love dearly and seeing her breathless. And I said, wow, okay, Kenya, I think it’s time for you to wake up. I think you’re not doing things correctly. And that was the turning point for me in recognizing wholeheartedly that I need to do something different for my life because I’m unhealthy in so many aspects. And this relationship that I’m involved in, the way I’m viewing myself, all of these things unfolded right before me when I held this baby. And so right then was a wakeup call. And it was like the lights went off. And I said, okay. I got to make a change.

00:10:13 – Gloria Grace Rand – Well, first off, it just breaks my heart to imagine the pain of going through that, because I’ve been blessed to bring two children into this world and I can’t even imagine how hard that must have been. Did you get help from somebody, though, to be able to do it? Because I know I’ve heard you’ve lost a child. It’s a death in the family. And I know just losing other family members how hard dealing with grief can be. So, did you seek any kind of help from counselors or anything like that to help with it?

00:10:49 – Kenya Lee – Absolutely. I went through grief counseling. The hospital that I had her at, they had a program for mothers of stillborns and miscarriages. So, I attended that and ultimately getting help emotionally from a therapist to recognize that there’s an issue there and to deal with the grief. Not only the grief, but deal with how this occurred. Right. I had played a part in it and not putting myself first and being involved in tolerating things and why are you tolerating this? I would have people say, what is going on with you? You don’t have to tolerate this. And so, I definitely had to get help, Gloria. And a lot of times certain cultures will shun that. Getting therapies and mental health wellness is not really something people like to talk about. And now it’s a little bit different. People are more open minded and understand that wellness is no matter if it’s physical, emotional, mental, it all is combined together. But I definitely took the step to embrace the resources around me and started getting some counseling to help heal that trauma. That is the reason why so many women that I work with, I tell them a lot of times, even though we don’t want to feel it, the trauma can really lead us to triumph, to triumph over something that is incredibly huge and we’ve been ignoring for a long time. And for me, that is exactly what happened. I had been ignoring multiple signs, but when this catastrophe happened, I had no choice, no choice but to go ahead and do what I had to do.

00:12:51 – Gloria Grace Rand – Yeah, it’s frustrating in a way, because it seems like sometimes the universe has to sort of knock us over the head with a metaphorical two by four to wake us up. And it’s a good thing, I suppose, even though it’s painful at the time. But if something good does eventually come out of it, then it is something to be grateful for, even though we’re not necessarily grateful in the moment. So, I’m very glad that you got help because I think that’s so important for anyone listening or watching this to know that when something like this happens, you don’t have to suffer alone. There is help available and take advantage of it. Find out. And if you don’t know of anything, find out. There’s always places that you can go to help because it’s so much easier to be able to work through this with the help of someone who has knowledge and training or maybe has gone through it themselves and they can give you some guidance on it. So, I applaud you for that.

00:13:56 – Kenya Lee – Yeah, I mean, so many times we feel like because we’re in a state of feeling alone, feeling just completely disengaged from our entire families, friends, everything. But it’s important to know that there are people that have gone through similar things, the same thing, and it’s nothing to be ashamed of. And so many times you have people that talk about it as if there’s something wrong with receiving help, which I find to be ludicrous, but there are people that don’t quite understand the health of the mind and you can’t listen to that, you’ve got to know that there’s help. We’re here to live a good life, we’re here to live a happy life. And whatever resources are there for us to do that we have to take advantage of.

00:14:53 – Gloria Grace Rand – Absolutely. Yeah. So, let’s talk a little bit about your book. So, what prompted you to be able to now take this experience you had and everything and now be able to put that into a book to help other women?

00:15:10 – Kenya Lee – So the book came by chance, as some things do. Some people set out to write about certain experiences and so forth. But for me, during my time of healing and going through various traumas in my life, I always wrote. That was one of the initial things and tools I was taught by therapists is that you need to get it out, you need to write, you need to journal. So, I’ve been journaling for well over 18, 19 years. And so, when I got to a place where I felt that I had made some significant strides and I was working with other women, I said, wow, wouldn’t it be interesting for me to go back to those journal entries and put them together and see what questions were answered that I had written to myself? So ultimately, that’s how the book was born. So, I went through and I pulled out a lot of these very turbulent times that I was writing and put them in the book and kind of give the reader understanding of where I was during that time and how with the tools that I learned, I was able to answer the questions that were posed. I was able to come out of feeling the way I was feeling. So, it’s quite, it’s amazing when you look back at things, it’s almost like when I look at those entries, I’m looking at a different person from a different time. And so I’m so grateful for that. So that’s how the book came about 18 years.

00:17:03 – Gloria Grace Rand – And I’m just going to ask you this as an aside because I’m curious, because I’ve journaled over the years, but I’ve been consciously this year actually dating my journals, and I haven’t always done that. Have you always put the date when you were doing it so that way you could go back in and look and see?

00:17:22 – Kenya Lee – For the most part, I would have a year, even if every excerpt was not dated per day. But I know what year I was in and what time frame. So that was very useful for me in combining things. And it’s so instrumental in just gauging our evolvement from a mental standpoint when you can just look back on six months ago or twelve months ago, what you were concerned about and what’s happened from that time. And more than likely it has changed in a positive manner.

00:18:02 – Gloria Grace Rand – That’s true, yes.

00:18:04 – Kenya Lee – So I strongly suggest journaling, and even if it’s small excerpts, but write something down every day, just to get those feelings out and check in with yourself and put it down on paper.

00:18:22 – Gloria Grace Rand – I couldn’t agree more. And I find that I’m starting to realize this, that just like, for me, meditation is like a practice I really commit myself to doing every day, because otherwise, if I don’t, the day goes awry. Well, I’m discovering that if I don’t journal every day, also the day can kind of go off the rails very easily. So, I’m deciding that, yeah, it’s like I need to have those two pieces are the two things that are very important. They’re like, what’s the term? Non-negotiables. So, I have to do those every day. I’ve got to find the time, even if it’s only one page. But to get something down, as you say. If you wanted to give someone listening today, like a piece of advice and that maybe from the book. What would be that the most important thing that someone should pay attention to other than journaling, let’s say, to be able to help them on this path to emotional greatness?

00:19:25 – Kenya Lee – To speak things into existence. Gloria, our words are so powerful spoken and written, I feel, but it’s very important that we speak things into existence and we speak to ourselves, not just our family members or our loved ones, but we speak to ourselves and affirm the things that it is we want and we desire. There’s nothing wrong with giving yourself a pep talk and changing. I call it changing the neuroplasticity in the brain, because so many people have dealt with traumas and different things that have altered their feelings and the way they have dealt with things, that it becomes imprinted into the brain. And so, we have to actively practice changing that for the positive. So, if I could say the number one thing is to affirm daily, and I do that every single day when I wake up and I look in the mirror, I affirm who it is I am and what it is that I am desiring to see happen for my life.

00:20:45 – Gloria Grace Rand – Yeah, I think that’s excellent advice. And I’m just wondering, I’m going to play a little devil’s advocate here. So if someone is listening to this, is there any way that they let’s say they want to be able to execute this and to do that, but is there any way that they could get it wrong?

00:21:07 – Kenya Lee – No, there’s no way of getting it wrong. Because if you initiate, even if you’re doing small, if you’re doing five minutes, it’s more than not doing anything. In those five minutes, you will see a significant change. And the women that I’ve worked with, when they performed a trinity strategy, because that’s what I termed it, three essential tools to be done daily. When they’ve done it in less than a month, they’re like, oh, my goodness, this is huge. I’m feeling so much better. Or my husband said that he sees a difference in me because you are actively doing something to change and shift your awareness and your outlook. So, there’s no such thing as getting it wrong. What’s getting it wrong is not doing anything at all.

00:22:05 – Gloria Grace Rand – Got you. Now, you mentioned this trinity, so let’s reinforce that. Let’s explain to our viewers again. So, what exactly are those three parts just to make sure they haven’t missed anything?

00:22:20 – Kenya Lee – Okay, so the first part is creation, and I define that as journaling, or if you are artistic, where you work with your hands to create something, doing that daily. The second part is affirmations. So, affirming what it is that you want, believe, and want to stand on. And the third thing and you mentioned that earlier, Gloria, that I found later in life, but I know that it’s the absolute best for bringing things full circle is meditation. So even if you’re taking ten minutes to go within and to allow your brain time to rest and reset and wash away the undesired or unneeded, I’d like to say, unneeded thoughts, that is the perfect combination for me and for all of the women that I’ve worked with. Those three things done daily is huge.

00:23:29 – Gloria Grace Rand – Absolutely. And I love that you say the unneeded thoughts. That’s a great way to put it. Yeah, I think that’s such an interesting way to phrase it, because sometimes we get so tripped up in, I think, frustrated sometimes by the thoughts that keep repeating. And I think it’s been said that what is it like 80% of the thoughts we think each day are the ones that we’ve been thinking over and over again. So it really does take a concerted effort to do the affirmations, as you say, to start retraining the brain and to start creating new neural pathways that are more affirming as opposed to the old stuff. So, yeah, it’s thoughts that aren’t serving us anymore. And it’s okay to let them go. yeah.

00:24:23 – Kenya Lee – It’s okay. And what we need to do is acknowledge them. A lot of times, if they’re hurtful or they don’t make us feel the best, we will continue to avoid them and slide them up underneath the rug. Well, they’re going to come back out because they need to be acknowledged. Yeah, once you acknowledge them, they can be released, they can go, and you’ll have a better time of not having them to repeat, but as long as you try to avoid them, it’s a never-ending cycle.

00:24:56 – Gloria Grace Rand – Absolutely. Yeah. And a lot of times, at least for me anyway, and I think for other people too, sometimes. I know some people are hesitant to meditate because, oh, I can’t quiet my mind, and it’s like, don’t worry about that. And sometimes that is when these old thoughts will come. And I just like to say thank you very much, and then just let it go. Thank you for sharing. And I’m going to think something else now, right now. And I think that’s.

00:25:24 – Kenya Lee – And no one’s brain. And women that are new to meditation, they say, Kenya, there’s no way I can quiet my brain. There’s no way my thoughts are going to stop. And I say that’s not what it’s for. Of course, your brain is going to constant, but with the practice you will calm the thoughts and you will develop a sequence to allow you to be more productive. So, it’s not about stopping thoughts. You let them come, you acknowledge them, and you release them and go on.

00:26:01 – Gloria Grace Rand – Absolutely. Yeah. This is really good stuff that you’re sharing, and I wanted to shift gears a little bit in the time we have left because I know that you are involved in some other wonderful work, and I wanted to talk about that. In going reading through your bio, I understand you founded a couple of nonprofit organizations and so I wondered if you could share with us a little bit about what they are, why you started them and what you hope to accomplish.

00:26:33 – Kenya Lee – Sure. So, the nonprofit Faith in Girls – FIG, is a nonprofit that I founded in 2012 and that is designed to assist girls and women alike to develop coping skills for just everyday things. And it has evolved. And now we have a housing component in which we’re helping single moms that are struggling to maintain permanent housing. We partnered up with the Detroit Land Bank in renovating older homes to allow them ability to buy a home and not go from place to place with renting, ultimately giving the family a foundation. So we provide skills, course for self-awareness, that’s top priority. But with that we are adding that component for housing, for permanent housing, which I think is so incredibly important, especially during these times where it is almost impossible for a lot of people to live the American dream and buy homes. And so many women are by themselves with their children, and they just want to have a decent and healthy environment for them. So that is what Faith in Girls is about.

00:28:02 – Gloria Grace Rand – Oh, that’s wonderful. And yeah, it’s true. And especially well now, of course, where I live in Florida in particular, the rents have gotten so expensive even just to rent an apartment and so to be able to help people to be able to buy a home is so good. And we were talking before that, my aunt lived in Detroit, and I remember every summer that I would go spend a week with her at her house. And she had this lovely old well, it wasn’t so old, I suppose, back then, because this is in the 70s, but it was one of these nice brick homes. And I just loved it, just the style of it. And I can still picture it in my mind’s eye. And I haven’t seen it in probably 40 years. And so, I love that you’re being able to help women and to be able to get them in and be able to preserve these homes because they were most likely a lot better built anyway than the homes that are available nowadays anyway.

00:29:02 – Kenya Lee – Absolutely. These homes are gorgeous. They’re brick, they have the older styles, but they’re sturdy. They’re beautiful, a lot of them. And it takes renovation and money to get them up to snuff, but then a family can enjoy it and have a legacy and feel worthy that they are able to provide a sense of stability for their family. And not only that, to be able to pass it on. So, we are offering nontraditional ways of buying for women that cannot afford to do the traditional buy. So, I’m very humbled. I’m very fortunate to be able to be part of something like that.

00:29:51 – Gloria Grace Rand – Well, that’s wonderful. If someone is listening to this and maybe they want to be able to support you in this venture, how can people connect with you and to be able to help you with that?

00:30:04 – Kenya Lee – Sure. Simply go on to www.faithandgirls.o-r-g and you can reach out via email, telephone, all of the information is there online, and we welcome it. We appreciate all supporters.

00:30:29 – Gloria Grace Rand – Awesome. But what is your main business right now? I mean, other than, obviously producing the book? So, are you working with women? Are you, like, coaching women or how else are you?

00:30:41 – Kenya Lee – I am coaching women. Starting in January, we will have an online university for self-awareness and self-esteem advancement that is going to be available the first week of January. But right now, I’m doing individual consultations with women for life skill changes in direction. But, yes, that is my passion. That’s my number one priority.

00:31:14 – Gloria Grace Rand – All right, awesome. And so, if someone wants to be able to connect with you, do you have your own, like, a business website then, separate from the nonprofit?

00:31:24 – Kenya Lee – They can reach or they can do

00:31:30 – Gloria Grace Rand – Okay.

00:31:31 – Kenya Lee – And it will directly give you access to making an appointment, getting on calendar, and yeah, you can start there.

00:31:42 – Gloria Grace Rand – All right, very good. Is there anything that I haven’t asked you about that I should have? Or any other words of advice you’d like to leave our audience with today?

00:31:57 – Kenya Lee – I just like to tell every individual, not just women, but of course, women is my focus and my love group, that no matter what trauma, what challenges, what hardship you face and may be facing right now, it is more than possible for you to overcome it and land in a better place than you ever imagined. So don’t ever, ever give up.

00:32:29 – Gloria Grace Rand – Very good. I appreciate that, and I’m sure our listeners do as well. And I so enjoyed our conversation today, and I’m really glad to have had a chance to get to know you a little bit more and to be able to share your message with the world and all the good work that you’re doing. So, thank you so much for being with us today.

00:32:53 – Kenya Lee – Thank you so much Gloria for having me. I really enjoyed it. Thank you.

00:32:58 – Gloria Grace Rand – And for those of you listening and or watching, I will have all of Kenya’s information in the show notes so you can go to and look for this episode. And you will get all of that information on her. And let’s see, anything else I want to let you know? I guess I think the other thing is just to thank you again for listening and watching. I really do appreciate all of you out there. And until next time, I encourage you to go out and live fully, love deeply and engage authentically.

00:33:35 – Gloria Grace Rand – Did you know that a majority of entrepreneurs tend to discount the importance of their work? And a good number feel their success is simply due to luck? I know from personal experience that self-doubt can keep you from having the kind of life and business you desire. That’s why I’ve created a free guide called Uniquely You how to Move from Self Doubt to Self-Love in four simple steps. To claim your free guide, go to liveloveengage. Gift that’s liveloveengage. G-I-F-T.

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About the Author
Known as The Insightful Copywriter, Gloria Grace Rand is also an inspirational speaker, author and host of the Live. Love. Engage. podcast. Prior to launching her SEO Copywriting business in 2009, Gloria spent nearly two decades in television, most notably as writer and producer for the award-winning PBS financial news program, “Nightly Business Report.”

Gloria turned to writing as a way to communicate, since growing up with an alcoholic father and abusive mother taught her that it was safer to be seen and not heard. But not speaking her truth caused Gloria problems such as overeating, control issues, and an inability to fully trust people. After investing in coaching & personal development programs, and studying spiritual books like “A Course in Miracles,” Gloria healed her emotional wounds. Today, she helps entrepreneurs develop clarity, confidence and connection to the truth of who you are, so you can create a business that has more impact, influence and income!

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