Don’t be afraid of the pull you feel inside of you to go in a different direction that feels uncomfortable.
Asa part of our series about business leaders who are shaking things up in their industry, I had the pleasure of interviewing Cassandra Branch.
Cassandra Y. Branch is the founder & Leader at Lisa’s Believe Ministries. A Personal Development Coaching & Consulting Ministry designed to lift women to believe in their self-worth and use their unique abilities to bring their dreams to life.
Cassandra believes that there is always another path to success and is passionate about encouraging women to grow with Jesus beyond pain into a Rising Women of Faith.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we dig in, our readers would like to get to know you a bit more.
Well, I started mentoring in the late 90’s teenage girls who needed a safe outlet through a mentoring program and soon realized that I was also mentoring their single mothers who just needed someone to believe in them and point them in the right direction with a listening ear.
While operating my Early Childhood Program and providing valuable parenting education, I often found clients in my office wanting to talk and in search of a listening ear. In all this, I saw how the Power of conversation built a community for families to create a structure for success.
I felt an urge to help more, but I didn’t know exactly what this could look like. Around 2010 I saw a need for teen foster parents and became a single foster mama, mainly teen girls, but I also fostered young children, tweens, and teen moms. I connected with several of the biological parents. I witnessed a need for parenting coaching, and I thought providing parenting training was my path with my sympathetic heart.
Beginning in 2016, I launched Lisa’s Believe Ministries, particularly for mentoring and parenting training. After a few years, I still had a need to build something outside of parenting training but did not know how to identify my true purpose. I was everywhere trying to figure out what am I supposed to be doing that will bring me more inner peace. How can I make an impact and stay original to myself? It was not until I was willing to take the lesson of my own life experiences and open to the idea that my voice was needed that I began to walk a new path. I had to develop my mindset to recognize that my story had value, not shame. My journey is what has made me who I am today.
Today, Lisa’s Believe Ministries has manifested into a personal development ministry that focuses on the mind, body, and spirit. This is accomplished through personalized 1:1 coaching and through my Rising Woman Programs.
Helping others bounce back from setbacks and see their transformation is what drives my success!
It’s kind of interesting; I thought hiding my personal story would work best for me, but that did not work! But what did work was looking back at my past to gain wisdom from it. This helped me to take action toward my own success.
At this point, I feel people are struggling with their own life experiences. And they are running from something or to something.
The message behind my coaching programs is that I believe in building on what’s already in you. For my clients to be enlightened and have freedom by showing them what is possible by looking at life experiences as something that builds up rather than down. Rather than disconnect from the truth, I believe in delving into truth, so that truth can no longer be a distraction to see success; however success may look to you. My goal is to deliver convenient services that support you mentally, physically, and spiritually to live a life that is genuinely yours.
OH YES, I have a couple of funny mistakes that come to mind, but one funny mistake I made years ago, was when I was trying to get used to video chatting platforms. I propped my phone to stand up to take an important conference call from my bathroom. In doing so, I thought I had pushed talk (audio only), maybe not, and was actually on video. The good news is that I was fully dressed, but I was doing my hair, and we all know how a girl’s countertop looks when she is getting ready! I didn’t realize that I was on video mode being watched applying gel and whatever else to my hair until I looked again! Needless to say, we all got a good laugh, but I’ve been cautious with my phone buttons after that. Besides, there have been some significant improvements with our smart devices, so no worries, I haven’t made that mistake again!
There have been so many people in my life who have fed into me, especially my brothers. Seeing their grit and their resilience keeps me focused. Because of them, I want to be more and do more. I have six brothers (I’m the only girl)! They make me proud, and I want to make them proud!
Outside of family, I am a huge fan of @tamronhall and look up to her. I admire her boldness and how she believes in herself through all her setbacks! She continues to keep at it strong and is now an Emmy Award-Winning Journalist and has her own talk show! She never gave up. I am a #tamfam because I see a female leader pushing through and showing up with confidence and keeping it real! When I see her, I see me.
In today’s parlance, being disruptive is usually a positive adjective. But is disrupting always good? When do we say the converse, that a system or structure has ‘withstood the test of time’? Can you articulate to our readers when disrupting an industry is positive, and when disrupting an industry is ‘not so positive’? Can you share some examples of what you mean?
A disruption is not always good, but we should always expect one.
Disrupting an industry is like a calm wind that comes at the right time. Think about how Airbnb showed up. Although the hotel industry slowly started realizing the disruption the consumers saw the beauty of the disruption immediately and wanted more!
The breeze feels good, and everyone talks about how good the breeze feels up against the heat. Even When you can’t feel the wind blowing, you know it’s still there because as you look up, you can see the branches on the tree gently swaying. Every time it blows, it feels a bit different, leaving you anticipating feeling the wind blowing again. Disrupting an industry is about providing convenience. Disruption is flexible, persistent, can make changes quickly, and is open to innovation. Disruption feels good; it adds real value and forces people to stop and look up, anticipating what will happen next. Disruption is not disrespectful. It does not show up with an intention to destroy everything in its path.
Can you share five of the best words of advice you’ve gotten along your journey? Please give a story or example for each.
It took me years to accept my resilience as part of my story. I saw my story as a shameful one. I didn’t want the world to know my personal history; who does, right? People who know your journey can relate and connect with you authentically.
Hiding your truth is like serving a wonderful store-bought meal to friends. Dressed up with added toppings or extra ingredients while proudly taking the credit for the whole meal creation. You feel great receiving compliments until your friend asks you for the recipe. The problem is you only have the dressing-up portion of the ingredients. The same thing about your story; you feel great about leaving out the not-so-good stuff until you realize there is no true message behind your why.
We live in a time when being an influencer is open to anyone. No matter what social media platform you turn to, you see people from all over doing their thing, and that thing may just be your thing. Instead of focusing on how to compete, your focus should be on how you can stand out and the primary value that you provide to your clients.
I’ve always known that I was meant for something much bigger than I could imagine. Still, I was afraid and uncomfortable with the direction I was being pulled into. There is no reason to be scared when God gives you repetitive messages that align with His words. Feeling uncomfortable is part of the journey. I think God shakes us up to wake us up.
Have a plan for recharging to avoid major burnout. Burnout is real, and it does not feel good. Resting for me includes a sleep routine, daily walks, short and long breaks throughout my day, time for friends and family, saying no, letting go, meditation & time with God, music, being present, laughing daily, and being grateful every day.
We are sure you aren’t done. How are you going to shake things up next?
Shaking things up is a requirement! I’m anticipating what my clients will need in the future, so I’m working on new distribution methods. I love to write, so perhaps a best-selling Christian Book, I don’t know, you’ll just need to stay tuned!
Do you have a book, podcast, or talk that’s had a deep impact on your thinking? Can you share a story with us? Can you explain why it was so resonant with you?
Clint Smith’s TED Talk “The Danger of Silence” really resonates with me. I learned some deep stuff about myself in 4:23 minutes and thought, WOW, I must do better!
I have kept silent when I should have spoken but didn’t dare because I was scared or didn’t want to lose a client or friend. Kept silent because I did not want to be left out. I struggled with my silence because I feared the world would make fun of me if I opened my mouth. Now, if I can use my voice to make a change, save a soul, warm a heart, I do it because I am better!
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
One of my favorite quotes by Ruby Dee goes like this:
“The Divine Impulse-It’s always safe to follow it. We’ve got to trust it and go wherever it takes us. Especially women”.
I love Ruby Dee and her wisdom! She reminds me that when the direction feels uncomfortable, know that it’s going to be alright. That I can trust my inner spirit. I can believe in the woman I was created to be and never give up on believing in the impossible.
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. :-)
If I could inspire a movement, it would be to help children (who are able) to be reunited with their families.
There is over 400,000 foster youth nationwide. This number is enormous, and everyone should be offended by this. These 400,00 plus children are our future! There needs to be more funding state-wide to provide families with resources, training, and mentorship. We should be more concerned about getting to the root of the cause, providing services and support that will strengthen families and programs that keep children out of the foster care system.
How can our readers follow you online?
This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for joining us!
Are you ready to find your inner strength and increase your faith in God and in yourself? Then I, Cassandra Y. Branch, am here for you. My mission is to empower you through self-discovery. Send a message, and let's embark on this journey.