Woman Wednesday: Najiva

*Note: Woman Wednesday is a part of our blog. Each Woman Wednesday post will feature a woman who would like to share information in the hopes of inspiring and motivating other women. Comments are welcome below.         

Q and A with Najiva, Jamaica–>New York–>Florida

“Your values and beliefs have a lot to do with how you lead the people around you.”

Q: What are you passionate about?

A: I am passionate about adding value to people’s lives through personal and professional growth and development. I have worked in leadership and management for 15 years for Walgreens Retail and Pharmacy Operations. My people management skills and leadership skills cultivated a passion in me to help my team members grow, develop, and advance to new levels, which led me to start my own coaching practice, The Consult Table. The Consult Table inspires new, experienced, and future leaders to maximize their potential to achieve the results in their performance. I also have a girls group mentoring program, Girls Dig Deeper Initiative. Girls Dig Deeper Initiative’s mission is to foster, guide, support, and encourage at-risk middle school girls within the schools and communities to empower them to dig deep within themselves to maximize their full potential.




Q: What were your younger years like?

A: I was born in the beautiful country of Jamaica, and I moved to the United States when I was 9. From then on, I lived in New York. I left New York after I graduated from high school and moved to South Florida, where I met my husband. We have four beautiful children today. Growing up in my younger years, I always believed in the power of education because my mother was an educator for 24 years in Jamaica and teaches now in the United States. I grew up fascinated with learning, and self-development was important to me. I believed knowledge is power, and once you have that, no one can take it from you. My Jamaican culture plays a major role in the person I am today. Our food, music, dance, traditions, family ties, and etiquette help me to embrace my values, beliefs, and self-love.




Q: What is something valuable you’d like others to know?

A: Something valuable I have learned is that your values and beliefs have a lot to do with how you lead the people around you. In leadership, what I have learned over the years is that if there is something that you value and live by and your team believes in it, they will follow you. If you reflect on what’s important to you as a leader with your team, they will know what to expect from you.



Q: What does feminism mean to you?

A: I view feminism as women having equal access to opportunities, authority, and influence as men. Women should not be turned down from gaining access through the “open door” because someone feels like their gender makes them incapable.




Thank you for reading!


I’d love to connect with you!

Email najiva@theconsulttable.com

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Woman Wednesday: Julianne

*Note: Woman Wednesday is a part of our blog. Each Woman Wednesday post will feature a woman who would like to share information in the hopes of inspiring and motivating other women. Comments are welcome below.     


Q and A with Julianne, Hartford County, Connecticut


“It’s all up to us whether we decide to use our broken pieces as a weapon or as a crutch.”   



Q: What are you passionate about?

A: Teaching others to fish. I saw a picture in a National Geographic when I was 13. This imprinted on my heart how I wanted to serve during my lifetime. The picture was actress Drew Barrymore in another country feeding a very long line of children. The kids did not have anything to eat, so their hands were out waiting for the “slop.” Their expressions seemed to be so grateful, yet they were so malnourished. It’s been 28+ years since I stumbled upon this photograph, but I see and feel like it was yesterday. I long to work full time with the youth in underprivileged areas to have an impact on the rest of their lives.





Currently, I speak in front a few hundred at a time. I just launched my 3rd stream of income in a wellness project. The C word is everywhere. (Cancer). It stole my big sister when she was 27. This was also a huge variable that has shaped me and my grit. I train folks on “tapping into their own human potential” and the importance of multiple streams of income. I’m excited to see it laid out. And I am always happy to inspire others.



Q: What is something valuable you’ve learned that you’d like others to know?

A: We all bleed the same. Everyone has a story. Those of us with the toughest experiences make the toughest humans. It’s all up to us whether we decide to use our broken pieces as a weapon or as a crutch.





Q: What were your younger years like? 

A. I grew up with my mom, who is a genius, literally. She has worked for the government for 35 years. And my dad is 100% American Indian, the Lumbee tribe. My younger years were, um, toxic and LOUD to describe it lightly. I found soccer to escape. Soccer offered me friendship, peace, confidence, and family. I clung to the soccer ball for so long. I was awarded almost a full scholarship to play Division 1 at a local state university. Soccer had a lot to do with who I am today.




Pictured: Julianne and her parents.



Pictured: Julianne and her daughters.



Q: What does feminism mean to you? 

A: Feminism means strength. Women are absolute warriors. So often, I’ve found, women have fallen into a trap behind a man. Or behind our children. Being a mother of 3, I’ve found out how capable and strong I really am. We get even more dangerous (in a good way) when women unite…Watch out world!




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Woman Wednesday: Leire

*Note: Woman Wednesday is a part of our blog. Each Woman Wednesday post will feature a woman who would like to share information in the hopes of inspiring and motivating other women. Comments are welcome below.  


Q and A with Leire H., Barcelona, Spain (originally from Bilbao, Spain)


“Time has made me realize that it is good to try to be the best you can be and give the very best you can, but failure is permitted. And it is failure that made me learn many times.”


Q: What are you passionate about?

A: I try to be passionate about everything I do. I work in Barcelona, Spain, as a human resources recruiter for a Dutch company. I like working with people because I think it is very enriching. There is a quote I love that says, “I learned more of what I know from people than from books.” Very similar to that, I love psychology. I always try to understand why people behave, feel, and think as they do. Apart from that, my real passion is aviation and traveling. My last trip was to Canada last summer, and I am already planning this year’s trips: France and Malaysia!





I am lucky to have an amazing family who loved and supported me more than anybody did and will ever do. My parents were also very strict with me and my studies especially. I remember my childhood as a very happy period, though, and I am convinced that I am who I am today because of them.



Q: What is something valuable you’ve learned that you’d like others to know?

A: I have learned to enjoy every moment. I wish I could go back to my 16-year-old self and tell her that nothing in life is as important as you think it is when you think about it. Everything in life moves on and changes, and everything is about different stages.





Also, I have always been very self-demanding, and that leads to many frustrations that spawn from me trying to be perfect in all aspects. I used to practice rhythmic gymnastics, which is an extremely hard sport. Time has made me realize that it is good to try to be the best you can be and give the very best you can, but failure is permitted. And it is failure that made me learn many times. I would also recommend everybody to enjoy every moment in life. We tend to look for happiness in our “ideal” world, leaving aside the moments that shape actual happiness. 




Q: What does feminism mean to you? 

A: For me, feminism is simply the equality of women and men. I think there has been a misconception by a small part of society, who thinks that feminism means hating men and defending women are superior to men. I think they are doing no favor to real feminism. It is much simpler than that: We are all human beings.


However, if we [women] are as intelligent, capable, and empowered as men, why can’t we qualify for the same work position in every part of the world? Why do we have to walk afraid when we go back home alone in the night? Education (not only at school, but at home) should have an essential role in achieving equality but unfortunately, we are far from that. I hope we see change in the near future.



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Woman Wednesday: 2018 Words of Wisdom

*Note: Woman Wednesday is a part of our blog. Each Woman Wednesday post will feature a woman who would like to share information in the hopes of inspiring and motivating other women. Comments are welcome below.


We’re starting 2019 the right way! We’ve selected some of the best words of wisdom from all of our past featured women from our 2018 Woman Wednesdays! This post is not meant to be read once; it is meant to be read again and again to be applied to everyday life. It takes constant practice in order to form new habits. Happy New Year everyone! Let’s make it the best year yet! 


Challenge yourself daily. 

“I try to challenge myself daily, to develop different parts of who I am and who I want to be. I’m a work in progress. We’re all works in progress, and I think that’s a really beautiful thing.” –Laura, Morris County, New Jersey


Let go of grudges, negativity, and your worst past moments. 

“I’ve realized that in my life, for me to overcome what holds me back, and to be happy, I have to let some things rest in the shadows. If they don’t contribute to the betterment of myself and/ or humanity, they probably aren’t worth holding onto. I decided I had to push forward for what I wanted (and deserved) if I had to be what I envisioned for myself.” –Kidron, Baltimore County, Maryland 


Stop complaining.

“My whole life I’ve been surrounded by strong women who fight for what is right and for what they want for their future. There are so many amazing women out there getting shit done. I only wish that women continue to stand together and speak their truth. My advice for women is to remember when times get tough, toughen up. Just know that you are stronger than you think you are. I think sometimes we forget that we can make a difference, and we can make anything happen with enough drive.” –Valerie, Towson, Maryland


Keep dreaming.

“From my story and from my family story, I hope that others, especially women, are empowered to keep dreaming and to not lose hope even if there are many obstacles in the way. Because by achieving their dreams, they will inspire a new generation of women to keep dreaming (and with dreams and hard work, succeeding).” –Lucia, Montgomery County, Maryland 


Work hard. 

“Fairytales and daydreams are possible as long as you work hard for them. Nothing comes easy, even if it seems that way, but if you believe in yourself, good things will come. Always be passionate, true to yourself, and constantly search for motivation.” –Leilani, Fairfax County, Virginia


Stop comparing yourself to others.

“Don’t look at someone’s life and think you should be doing what they’re doing – you should do what makes you happy and what you are passionate about. I think life is too short not to live in a way that makes you approach each and every day with a full sense of joy and enthusiasm. There is always something to be grateful for and that can bring a smile to your face.” –Alysha, Berks County, Pennsylvania


Break down your dreams into goals, and break down your goals into achievable steps. 

“Life is short, and you should do anything and everything you want to/love. Whether you are miserable at your job, doing things that don’t serve you, or you want to do things that seem out of reach, whatever that is…work toward your goals, do the things you love, and don’t stop loving your life.” –Brittany, Mercer County, New Jersey


Look at your weaknesses as strengths, and use them as such. 

“Even the person who seems to have it the most together has problems, and we are all one big mess. I learned that what I considered to be a weakness was actually a strength that allowed me to help others with the same issues. I remember saying that I hated my life, that I wanted to be someone else, someone normal. Your day is coming. You just have to take those baby steps until they become great strides. Then one day, you will look back and only have some memories of that time, long ago, when you were struggling. If I can do it, you can do it. We are no different. Set your mind, and keep it set.” –Caitlin, College Park, Maryland


Find something that inspires you that you can look at every day. 

“I remember flipping through a magazine one day (out of boredom), and I came across an article about hiking. And the editor decided to highlight “Legs strong enough to hike all the way to the top.” This statement resonated with me, because I started hiking with my friends around that time. On day 1, day 2, day 3…and okay let’s say up to day 30, I felt pretty weak. But every time we went, I was a little bit stronger, a little bit faster, and I was not running out of breath. I could see and feel the progress I made. So, I was not the best I could be on day 1, but to keep up with my friends, I had to keep going even when I was tired. I had to eliminate the mental barrier that said, “I can’t do it today, so I shouldn’t even try.” If you have a goal in mind, keep going, because you might be surprised by what you can do.”–Jessica, Hunterdon County, New Jersey


Think about what made you happy as a child. 

“Look back to when you were younger, and see if what you love now is what you loved back then. Often, the things we loved when we were kids are the things we have a true passion for.” –Faith, White Marsh, Maryland


Look for the positives in everything. 

“If you find the positive in every day, you will be so much happier. Also, when you have goals and put them into the universe, you are speaking them into existence. Finding the positives and putting them out to others will get you into the right mindset to achieve your goals.” –Mary, Baltimore County, Maryland


Be different. 

“I want others to know that it’s okay to be different; it’s okay to not fit into traditional molds. Your story is still just as important, and people will most definitely listen to it. You just have to believe in yourself enough to share it.”– Kerry, Baltimore County, Maryland 


Don’t be hard on yourself. 

“I wasn’t a failure or a quitter for changing my major. I was making myself happy. I also learned that it is very hard to stick with something when people are against you, but in the end, it is worth it. –Corrie, Baltimore County, Maryland


Choose to surround yourself with people who support you. 

“I have dealt with so much, but I am so happy because I have chosen to surround myself with positive, amazing people. Know that there is always good even with the bad.”–Christen, Baltimore City, Maryland 


Believe you are valuable. 

“Believe you are valuable. Invest in yourself. Work toward your goals, and be proud when you accomplish something.”–Miriam, San Diego, California 


Understand that you don’t have to do what everyone else does. 

“There’s such a disconnect now with the way we ‘should’ live our lives and the way we want to live our lives. I graduated college, received a degree, got a good job in a good city, and I’m sure to many that would be a total success story, but it wasn’t the end of mine.” –Sam, Sunshine Fields, New Jersey


Change your life by being kind. 

“I believe we can really change the world through kindness and how we treat those in our daily lives. In order to make a difference in the world, we don’t always have to do grand gestures. Doing small things with great love can have just as great of an impact on the world.” –Katherine, Hunterdon County, New Jersey 

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Know that you can do more than one thing. 

“I want others to know that it’s OK to do more than one thing. People thought I was crazy in college for playing more than one sport, and people think I am crazy now for having three jobs. I love what I do, and I enjoy all of it. If you can find a healthy balance, do everything. Be a jack of all trades. Know a little bit about all things.” –Steph, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 

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Understand that you don’t ever truly fail unless you give up. 

“I recently wrote a letter to Sherry Lansing, a retired film executive who ran Paramount Pictures until about 2004. She’s my role model. I was so excited when I got an email back from her! One of the things she said is: “Be persistent. Never give up. Success doesn’t come easily, but hard work always pays off.” If she rose to the top in this crazy industry, that advice must have worked for her, and I really value it.” –Rachel, Los Angeles, California 


Always look for ways to improve yourself. 

You don’t drown by falling in the water, you drown by staying there. So take action. There’s no success without failure. There will always be bad days and even worse days. Learn to accept it, deal with it, and ride that wave!” –Hilary, Milford, New Jersey


Treat others the way you want to be treated; what you put out into the world is what you get (more or less). 

“You never really know what someone is going through despite their outward appearance or your depiction of them.”–Raquel, King of Prussia, Pennslyvania


Understand that you choose who you want to be each and every day. 

“I had a college professor who, day one of class, talked about how we introduce ourselves to other people by telling them stories about our lives so far. It’s sort of how we package and present ourselves. I think it’s a good idea to look at those tales we’ve curated and see what they say about us, and also, to realize that the stories society tells us impacts which narratives are worth keeping.” –Megan, Baltimore, Maryland 

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Remember that only you know what is best for you, and remind others if needed.

“There will always be so many outside opinions of people that think they know better or think they know you, but nobody knows you better than you. Also, nobody knows your vision better than you! Trust in yourself.” –Kristin, Annapolis, Maryland


Learn every single day. 

“You can do what you set your mind to. Everything takes work, and learning is a constant part of life. If your dream is to one day own a business that makes money, you need to make sure you have all the skills and knowledge to make that happen.”– Jen, Green Bay, Wisconsin



There you have it! Those are the words of wisdom from our 2018 featured women. Read them again and again. Pick and choose what you like or what resonates with you. There will be new women and new words of wisdom in 2019. 


Let’s make this the best year yet! 






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