ESSENCE Empowerment: Steve Harvey & Lisa Nichols Teach Festival Goers How To Act Like A Success

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The vibe was electric as comedian/author Steve Harvey and motivational speaker Lisa Nichols shared jewels of wisdom during their "Act Like A Success" Empowerment Experience.

The vibe was electric at the Ernest M. Morial Convention Center as comedian/author Steve Harvey and motivational speaker Lisa Nichols shared jewels of wisdom with the audience during their "Act Like A Success" Empowerment Experience. Speaking to a packed house, the dynamic duo tag teamed to spread their message of empowerment and inspiration on the recent stop of their "Act Like A Success" tour.

Nichols kicked things off on a high note as she took the stage with her energetic and fiery delivery. Within minutes she had the crowd on their feet as they explained what to expect from two hour panel. Warning them that it would be radical, unapologetic and candid, she said, "I'm not looking at your yesterday; I'm looking at your tomorrow. I'm not even looking at your tomorrow. I'm looking at your next year. I'm invested in that."

In addition to their mission of providing inspiration and hope, she pointed out that there were several points in particular she wanted everyone to walk away with. "If I need to bare my soul so that you know that it is safe to do the same, then I will do that because there are four things I want you to walk away with." Instructing them to jot them down, she told them that they needed to live with the following, "Remember that I have nothing to hide. I have nothing to protect. I have nothing to defend and I have nothing to prove. That my friends is where freedom lies and where freedom lives. If we can have a conversation like that, then we can make some progress." 

As she geared up to bring Harvey to the stage, she continued to stoke the flames of anticipation for the life-changing session. "Some of us are still caught up in other people's perception of us. Someone [in this room] came so that you could be recommitted to your own dreams and goals. You thought you came for Prince," she said wryly, pausing as the crowd broke out into laughter. "[But] he is already living his dream, I'm just saying. You walked into this room still unclear which is fine because sometimes God has to hide it from you til the very last minute. Today someone is going to find their breakthrough." 

Next up it was Harvey's turn to set the room on fire. Bringing the crowd to their feet while taking the stage, Harvey used his signature mixture of humor and spirtuality to inspire the audience to reach for their dreams. He lead his segment off with the story of how he first got his start in comedy back in 1985. After selling his jokes to a friend for only $10 a piece, he finally decided to step out on faith and pursue his dream of being a stand up comedian. Pursuing his goals ultimately led to the demise of his marriage and led to him living out of his car, before he finally got his big break with an appearance on "Showtime At The Apollo." Despite the trials he endured, Harvey shared that it was God who allowed his dreams to come to pass. 

"He did exactly what he said he was gonna do. He took me places I ain't never go," he said, his voice being drowned out by cheers. "God is in the blessing business. He has stuff for you that you can't even imagine. He'll have you places you ain't never even thought of. None of this happens unless you jump, which leads me to my next point. You have got to take action; nothing happens without action."

Getting serious for a moment, he further reiterated his point by comparing taking chances with jumping off a cliff. "We are all standing on the cliff of life. You ever notice that when you're standing on the cliff that you see people soaring by? You know why they're soaring? Because they have a parachute that has opened," he explained. 

While he maintained that God will help see the dream through, he did caution that there is still a strong chance of falling before soaring. "When you jump, this is a promise, your parachute will not open right away," he said, drawing laughter from the crowd. "It takes some time, so when you see those successful people, just know that their parachute didn't open either. It takes some time." 

Interacting frequently with the audience, both Harvey and Nichols kept the room's energy high as they shared with everyone the lessons that they've learned along the way, leaving the room feeling energized and inspired to reach for the stars. 

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