#WEW: Women Who Empower Us – Iyanla Vanzant
Gus Bennett

It’s Women Empowerment Wednesday and we could think of no one better than Essence Fest alum, Iyanla Vanzant to be the first woman we profile in our Women Who Empower Us series!


Iyanla, which means “great mother” in the Yoruba tradition, is an extremely accomplished inspirational leader, author, and TV personality. She has encouraged generations to “do the work” on themselves through her various published works, appearances on The Oprah Winfrey Show and Oprah’s Lifeclass, and has even committed to fixing other’s lives as host of Iyanla, Fix My Life, OWN’s number one reality show.


Iyanla has proven to have an endless arsenal of uplifting words to offer and personal experiences to share. Here are a few of her most profound quotes from her appearances and books to help #EmpowerU:


On healing: “You must find the strength to open the wounds, stick your hands inside, pull out the core of the pain that is holding you in your past, the memories, and make peace with them.”


On self-love: “Loving yourself means that you accept responsibility for your own development, growth and happiness.”


On success: “The key to success is not what you do, it is how you feel about what you are doing.”


On forgiveness: “Forgive everything! Forgiveness does not erase the memory of an experience, it neutralizes its impact.”


On prayer: “When we pray, it opens our minds to the divine consciousness of God. Prayer opens your mind to answers that have always been present.”


On grief: “When we lose a loved one or end a long-term relationship, grief is natural. We must honor each stage of grief and emotion we have.”


On spirituality: “Spirit is the key to everything we desire. It is our weather-proofing, our Teflon, our line of credit that assures if we just keep putting one foot in front of the other, one day there will be a miraculous payoff.”


Stay tuned to EssenceFestival.com to see who will be at this year’s #EssenceFest to #EmpowerU!