Archive for ‘Role Models’

September 4, 2012

Guest Post: What Gabby Douglas Showed ME about Elevating Your Influence

Stewarding your gift means putting yourself in a position to be heard. And if there’s anyone who can model that for us, it’s Gabby Douglas. Now, face it, you probably didn’t know who she was two months ago. I know I didn’t…

But by now we all have heard her story: She trusted her calling, she put in the work, she prepared and prepared, she prayed and she showed up in London in the absolute fullness of her gift. When the time came to perform, she sent the blessings up to God and they fell back down upon her.

At 4’11 and the age of 16, Gabby has stood on the global stage and put herself in a position to be heard. She’s taken her “royal” position as a minister to the world.

And here’s what I believe this spirited and courageous young firecracker  can teach us visionary leaders and dreamers about the marketplace…

Hire a Good Coach. “I’ve got to get a coach I can believe in, and who believes in me,” Gabby told her mom two years ago. She left home and went to live with a family she’d never met in Iowa, because her new coach had a gym there. She made her decision—and that was that. She was lonely. She was homesick. And she stuck it out for her dream, with a coach who believed in her. Have you made the decision to invest in a coach who believes in your dream?

Be Consistent. Gabby recognized her own gift (her mother reports she could do perfect cartwheels at the age of 3) and said YES to her dream. God chose her and she owned it. You know how I like to say, Many are called, but few choose to answer that call? Well, she did, again and again and again. Former Olympian Kerri Strug wrote, “Gabby held her lead by staying dedicated to what she could control—her own skills and routines.” Where do you need to be more consistent, show more effort, be more dedicated?

Live in Faith. When you walk in pursuit of your purpose, you will be protected. Gabby moved 3,000 miles from home at age 14—and found a loving “second family” who took awesome care of her. Her mom emailed a scripture every day before practice. In an interview, Gabby said, “I wanted to perform for sharing God’s glory. When you’re scared of [learning a new] skill you just have to rely on God. He hasn’t given us a spirit of fear but a spirit of peace, love and sound mind. If I keep falling… I meditate. We have to put on the full armor of God so we are ready and prepared.” When fear knocks at your door, how do you strengthen your faith?

The promise is waiting for you. Thanks for showing us how it works, Gabby.


About the Author

Marshawn Evans is a Global Mentor and Catalyst for Women looking to Launch Their Dreams and Live Their Purpose. She equips others to AMPLIFY their lives, their leadership and their legacy by teaching the principles of influence, branding, and divine purpose. Her weekly eZine goes out to thousands of subscribers. Are you ready to unleash your brilliance and align with your REAL destiny? Sign up for a FREE subscription at


See Also: “The Gift of Elevation

Previous Post: “What Obama’s America Taught Me about Entrepreneurship

July 31, 2012

Introducing Ceci Johnson of Ceci New York

I wanted to share a special blog with you all that is was originally posted in my DA Weddings blog, but because the subject is a successful wife and “momprenuer” I knew she’d be a perfect fit and inspiration for you all.  So now I present to you: Ceci Johnson of Ceci New York!

Today I’d like to introduce to you Ceci Johnson of Ceci New York.  Hopefully, this isn’t the first time you’ve heard about her, although this is her first debut on DA Weddings.  Since 2004, Ceci has been building a fabulous empire of charming sophistication, bespoke (custom made) pieces, and all-around luxury that no one can deny.  Her empire–namely as it concerns invitations–is built on creations that will absolutely have you in raptures over the beautiful, bespoke designs.

About Ceci

Ceci is stunningly beautiful, refreshingly original, and amazingly multi-faceted individual without whom the world of weddings, fashion, and design would be lacking that certain something that only she can offer.  As a contributing editor and blogger for many sites such as Style Me Pretty and frequently featured in various publications such as Town & CountryBRIDESMartha StewartElegant BrideElleInStyle, and many others, Ceci has very decidedly created her own voice in the creative industries as a trustworthy name, luxury brand, and true designer.  To learn more about Ceci Johnson, please see here.

About Ceci New York & Ceci Weddings

Ceci New York was the artiste’s first venture.  The company, founded in 2004, is a one-of-a-kind luxury invitation brand catering to royalty, A-list celebrities, corporate clientele, as well as other high profile individuals and brands.

Her techniques are fresh breath of air in a sea of designers who rely heavily on templates and other cookie-cutter type design processes.  All of the designs created by Ceci New York are high-end, ornate, “things” of beauty that any bride or other stationary-seeking individual would be thrilled to have.  To view her exclusive line of Ceci Weddings invitations, please visit her site.

About CeciStyle 

CeciStyle is a weekly “style letter” absolutely brimming with inspiration, education, and always—sophistication.  In it she utilizes her graphic design and visual styling experience gives expert advice on style, entertainment ideas, last-minute gift ideas, and much, much more.  From fashion and décor to invitations and weddings, CeciStyle is a place for you the be enthralled by it all.  Subscribe to CeciStyle today!

Awards & Accolades

Ceci’s vast industry experience and reach has allotted her some very much deserved awards and accolades, some of which include:

  • “25 Top Trendsetters” by Modern Bride
  • “Expert Stationer” by New York Magazine
  • “Invitation Innovator” by WEtv

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Ceci also serves as a spokeswoman for several networks, a panel expert for Wedding Central, a frequent television guest, as well as globetrotting speaker on branding and style to brides and industry professionals alike.

Ceci Johnson’s incredible taking of all that is wedding, style, and sophistication is truly a testament to her unique, creative abilities.  Be inspired by Ceci’s incredible and decorative abilities today, you won’t be sorry!

For more information and inspiration by Ceci Johnson, please visit her website or follow her on FacebookTwitter, and Pinterest.

For Ceci Weddings Pricing, see here.

Original DA Weddings Post: “Introducing Ceci Johnson of Ceci New York

Previous Post: “Your Cake & Eat It Too!” (Of Marissa Mayer)

If you would like to use this post, feel free!  Just be sure to include this blurb with today’s blog:

Desiree M. Mondesir is the CEO and Founder of Desired Assistance or “DA” virtual writing and editing company which also encompasses DA Inspires, DA WeddingsDA Luxury and her self-titled authoress blog.  As a dedicated writer and entrepreneur, Desiree seeks to inspire the imagination, educate her readers, and challenge the toxic mindsets of individuals all over the world.  Sign up for a FREE subscription at

July 26, 2012

Your Cake & Eat It Too!

I’m sure many of you have heard of the new Yahoo CEO, Marissa Mayer: the former Google exec with a new appointment and a new addition—or at least a new addition on the way.   She seems to have it all.  But is it really possible?  Can she really have it all?

Women, true to form, have lauded and lashed out against her, at least verbally.  Some like me—and hopefully you—are thrilled for her new position and wish her God’s absolute best, but others, either afraid that she will fail or hope that she will fail, respond with jealousy and anger.  It’s very likely those in the “old boy’s club” are not too thrilled about Mayer’s appointment, but as women, we should be doing everything in our power to support her.  If she can’t rely on us, then who can she rely on?

Supporting Marissa as Christians

First of all, as women who are also entrepreneurs and writers, we should support Marissa Mayer because it is the godly thing to do.  Jealously and envy have no place in the Christian woman, neither do plotting and scheming against anyone.

“Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God,” (Galatians 5:19-21 emphasis mine).

Paul teaches the Galatians, a sect of Celtic [Gaul] Christians of the time, that there are many acts which will cause us to miss heaven and among them are:

  • Hatred
  • Contentions
  • Jealousies
  • Outbursts of Wrath
  • Selfish Ambitions
  • Dissensions
  • Envy
  • Murders [Slander, Character Assassination]

When we partake in these actions, we throw off the image of God and put on an entirely other and ugly image.  No wonder the men likely don’t respect poor Marissa!  Women don’t, so why should they?

We should be focusing, rather on good thoughts or good “energy” as the world calls it as far as Marissa is concerned.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.  Against such there is no law.  And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.  If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.  Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.” (Galatians 5:22-26).

We should instead be displaying these godly traits:

  • Love
  • Joy
  • Peace
  • Longsuffering [Patience]
  • Kindness
  • Goodness
  • Faithfulness
  • Gentleness
  • Self-Control

The fruit of the spirit is what we should be walking in towards Marissa and others like her.

Supporting Marissa as Fellow Women

We should also support Marissa because her success can be ours as well.  If and when she succeeds, that could mean phenomenal things for women who work.  We can have mom-friendly work environments where women will not have to be afraid to take babies to the doctor’s office, attend school recitals, and even turn the Blackberrys and iPhones off at a certain time.  We can create and support environments where women don’t have to be scared to become pregnant and increase their families for fear of being fired.  Who knows?  Maybe woman, wife, and mom-friendly work environments will cause us to be better at all of those jobs as well as simultaneously becoming better at work and in society as a whole.  Who wouldn’t want that kind of environment?

It’s lovely and very desirable to have a husband who is the breadwinner; however, some of us have destinies to complete outside of our first position as wife and mother so we should do everything we can to support a seamless relationship between home and work by supporting the Marissas of the world.

It is possible to have it all, just like the Proverbs 31 Woman did.  However, it will be easier on all of us if we work together or at least support each other when we are awarded fantastic positions, make new acquisitions, soar to new heights, and yes, become pregnant for the first time at age 37.  Marissa Mayer must already be a phenomenal woman to accomplish what she has, so let’s make sure that her growing baby will live in a world that understands it is ok for a woman to succeed in the home and out.  Let’s bless Marissa and in turn, be blessed ourselves!

Related Post: “How to Balance Motherhood and Career (if You’re Not Marissa Mayer” by FORBES Magazine

Previous Post: “Beauty AND Brains


If you would like to use this post, feel free!  Just be sure to include this blurb with today’s blog:

Desiree M. Mondesir is the CEO and Founder of Desired Assistance or “DA” virtual writing and editing company which also encompasses DA Inspires, DA WeddingsDA Luxury and her self-titled authoress blog.  As a dedicated writer and entrepreneur, Desiree seeks to inspire the imagination, educate her readers, and challenge the toxic mindsets of individuals all over the world.  Sign up for a FREE subscription at

May 16, 2012

P.31 Woman: The Model Entrepreneur

I am going to borrow of an article I once read entitled “The Re-Domestication of the American Woman”.  I believe the title speaks for itself as well as that it is absolutely a perfect description of where many women are and choose to be in this society.  I am meeting more and more women who long to be stay-at-home wives and mothers who also equally desire to have fulfilling careers and or ministries.  This may seem like a paradox, but it is actually not.  It fits in perfectly with the career age we are in and that is the Age of Entrepreneurship.

With the economy crashing and the increasing inability for college grads to find enjoyable jobs in or out of their fields of study, it is becoming increasingly popular for the recent grads as well as unemployed to create their own businesses.  I just received an email from Young Entrepreneur about it today entitled “Entrepreneurship as a Career Choice for New Grads Gets Some Respect”.  I believe that especially as women, the Proverbs 31 Woman (or “P.31” as we’ll call her) is the perfect role model of entrepreneurship.

P.31 Woman

Whocan find a virtuous wife?  For her worth is far above rubies.  The heart of her husband safely trusts her; so he will have no lack of gain.  She does him good and not evil all the days of her life.  She seeks wool and flax, and willingly works with her hands.  She is like the merchant ships, she brings her food from afar.  She also rises while it is yet night, and provides food for her household, and a portion for her maidservants.  She considers a field and buys it; from her profits she plants a vineyard.  She girds herself with strength, and strengthens her arms.  She perceives that her merchandise is good, and her lamp does not go out by night.  She stretches out her hands to the distaff, and her hand holds the spindle.  She extends her hand to the poor, yes, she reaches out her hands to the needy.  She is not afraid of snow for her household, for all her household is clothed with scarlet.  She makes tapestry for herself; her clothing is fine linen and purple.  Her husband is known in the gates, when he sits among the elders of the land.  She makes linen garments and sells them, and supplies sashes for the merchants.  Strength and honor are her clothing; she shall rejoice in time to come.  She opens her mouth with wisdom, and on her tongue is the law of kindness.  She watches over the ways of her household, and does not eat the bread of idleness.  Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her:  ‘Many daughters have done well, but you excel them all.’  Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing, but a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised.  Give her of the fruit of her hands, and let her own works praise her in the gates,” (Proverbs 31:10-31).

P.31 Character

This is probably the most notable trait of P.31 that we should emulate—she is absolutely brimming with Godly character.  We see this by the way her husband trusts her and the way her family praises her.  We also see it in her work ethic.  She is always doing something of value, always taking care of those around her including her family and employees, and she is always kind.  It also says that “strength and honor are her clothing” which means that she literally wears her integrity on her sleeve; everyone can see it and because she is honourable, she will always be honoured and respected herself.  This is the type of fortuitous woman we should model ourselves after whether we are entrepreneurs or not.

P.31 Wisdom

P.31 is also an extremely wise woman.  We can see the use of her discernment in the fact that her husband trusts her (it would be hard to trust anyone with no discretion or discernment).  You can tell that she handles her finances well at home and in every venture she takes on such as her business deals, real purchases, and investments.  She produces products to be sold (i.e. products of her vineyard, linen garments, and sashes) and wisely prices those items.  We can infer this because who trusts a merchandiser who unfairly prices their items? No one.  She is wise and this is especially important when considering pricing our own business products and services during a recession.  If we wisely price our services and rates, then even during a recession, we will be able to grow our business.  Godly wisdom always supersedes worldly wisdom.

P.31 Charity

All throughout the P.31 passage, we can appropriately infer that she is a loving woman.  And in conjunction with that love, she is a philanthropist.  It says that she “extends her hand to the poor, yes, she reaches out her hands to the needy” which is not just a godly trait, but a smart business move as well.  As Christians we know that when we give cheerfully men will give into our bosoms “pressed down, shaken together, and running over” (Luke 6:38) and shall reap bountifully (II Corinthians 9:6).


P.31 is the real Superwoman.  She manages to do everything for her family as well as everything for her enterprises and everyone is happy!  Now, if you’re anything like me you were a bit daunted when you first started reading about and comprehending P.31.  I once heard Pastor John Hagee say that it was possible to be P.31 over the process of time.  And for a while I agreed with that statement and to be fair, I still do.  However, I also believe that with women who are entrepreneurs and or ministers have the ability to do this on a regular basis.  I believe this works best (depending on the age and or existence of your children) if you have a home-based business or a remote/virtual business.

The man who pushed me to start my own business once told me, “Dez, you have the perfect career for a wife and mother”.   And I do!  I work from home, set my own schedule, and can work from wherever I like whether it’s my home office, Starbucks, the library, or vacation.  I have a girlfriend who is a Social Media Manager and handles Marketing and PR for her clients and she’s a wife and new mother.  You can view her blog Beauty Marked Mom here.  I also know of other women who are married and or have children with ministries and businesses of their own.

It is absolutely 100% possible to be P.31 in today’s society and chances are if you’re married or plan on being married this concept will thrill your husband too!  If you’re scared to step out and start your enterprise, pray and ask God for the courage, wisdom, resources, and connections to do so.  The Holy Spirit will never steer you wrong and He makes a darn good business partner.  And remember whatever you do, do it to the glory of God (I Corinthians 10:31).

Previous Post: “The Right to Write


If you would like to use this post, feel free!  Just be sure to include this blurb with today’s blog:

Desiree M. Mondesir is the CEO and Founder of Desired Assistance or “DA” virtual writing and editing company which also encompasses DA Inspires, DA WeddingsDA Luxury and her self-titled authoress blog.  As a dedicated writer and entrepreneur, Desiree seeks to inspire the imagination, educate her readers, and challenge the toxic mindsets of individuals all over the world.  Sign up for a FREE subscription at