Iyanla Vanzant shares advice for young women

Last month I had the pleasure of interviewing Iyanla Vanzant for JET magazine. During the interview we talked about her new show on OWN, Iyanla Fix My Life, her reunion with Oprah, and how she came to be the powerhouse speaker and spiritual advisor she is today (check out the Sept. 17th issue of JET on newsstands now!).

When I stepped into the conference room at the Beverley Hilton Hotel Ms. Vanzant was radiant. She had a welcoming spirit, and asked me how I was doing. While these seem like standard pleasantries, I felt like she really wanted to know, and at several points during our chat that day, I couldn’t keep from tearing up because I felt she was speaking directly to me.

For years I, like many of you, watched Ms. Iyanla on TV and wondered if she actually lived up to her on-screen persona. But meeting her confirmed it. What we see on our televisions is how she is: calm, extremely funny, open, and constantly dropping jewels.

As I wrapped up the questions for my JET interview, I couldn’t help but sneak in a few questions for my #GOALdiggers group, and admittedly, for myself.

Check out our brief, and wonderful, conversation:

Or listen here to a slightly longer version: 

Britni Danielle: What kind of advice would you give to younger women?

Iyanla Vanzant: Same advice, what’s your vision?

A goal is an intellectual concept—can you see it? ‘Cuz if you can’t see it within you then you’re never going to accomplish it.

What’s your vision? The vision will pull you forward. The goal will keep you busy.

BD: A lot of the time, like I said I have certain intentions for myself, and this has really started for me over the past year…and sometimes you get a little scared…

IV: I get a little scared. I get a little scared.

BD: I get a little scared, and you want to do this big thing…

IV: I want to do this big thing.

BD: And I want to do this big thing…

IV: See you can’t even own it, how you gonna do it? If you can’t put an “I” in it and you can’t own it and then process all of the feelings that come up when you say, “I want to do this big thing”—it hits you right here—you got to process that out. You got to get clear about what that is.

BD: So how do yo–, I, overcome that?

IV: I would say, an easy fix is, write down the big thing you want to do, and then look at it. Then look at the positive and negative.

You say, “I want to build this spiritual hospital.” [Listing the negatives] Nobody’s ever heard of a spiritual hospital, you don’t have the money, you can’t do this…that’s the can’t.

But I feel it, and all the good things. You’ve got to get the internal dialogue about the positive and the negative, then you got to start to eliminate the negative.

What I do, I do a thing called the Emotional Freedom Technique. So whenever I have stress, anxiety, fear, or am upset about anything, I tap it out.

What keeps us from achieving our heart’s desires is not anything outside of us, it’s the conflict inside. And that’s what we do on Iyanla Fix My Life. We look at what’s happening outside and identify the inner conflict and the inner upset. If we can navigate that then things can unfold differently.


Will you be tuning into Iyanla Vanzant’s new show, Iyanla Fix My Life?  Have you had a conversation that shifted your perspective on things? Please leave a comment and share.

*Want to connect with a growing group of #GOALdiggers? Meet us over on Facebook

Related Post