lia valencia key imperfectly empowered podcast with ahna fulmer

From Homeless To 100 Million Homes On Oprah

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From homeless to 100 million homes, Lia Valencia Key shares how she went from living in a shelter and suffering a tragic loss to designing her own jewelry line and being featured on one of the world’s biggest stages. 

Lia is sure to inspire you to let your light shine!  [Don’t miss the incredible discount she is offering YOU on her renowned jewelry!]

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  • The empowering principles of choice and circumstance
  • 2 important keys to unlocking success no matter your predicament
  • Life’s #1 rule
  • Ultimate strategies to overcome challenges
  • What will happen when you find your passion
From homeless to 100 million homes, Lia Valencia Key shares how she went from living in a shelter and suffering tragic loss to designing her own jewelry line and being featured on one of the world’s biggest stages.  Lia is sure to inspire you to let your light shine!   [Don't miss the incredible discount she is offering YOU on her renowned jewelry!]


From homeless to 100 million homes, Lia Valencia Key shares how she went from living in a shelter and suffering a tragic loss to designing her own jewelry line and being featured on one of the world’s biggest stages. 


Lia Valencia Key began her journey with very humble beginnings; raised in a homeless shelter in the inner-city of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Lia decided at an early age to emit joy through adversity. She was determined not to become a product of her environment, and to always follow her inner voice as a dreamer, believer, and achiever. That inner voice consistently encourages Lia to continuously seek sunshine, joy, and happiness. Following her heart ultimately helped Lia to redefine her prosperity to mean joy, shining bright, loving life, inner fulfillment, and accomplishment. Lia used this mindset to rise above all challenges and hardships by attaining a Master’s Degree, a top license in Cosmetology, working as a stylist for one of the largest televised home shopping networks, gained life-changing experiences as a lead stylist for top beauty brand CEO’S, and amazing opportunities to travel the world. Throughout her education, work experiences, and travels abroad, Lia found herself continuously absorbing love, light, and happiness everywhere she landed. The Valencia Key brand’s mission is to inspire life with style. Wearing Valencia Key jewelry will uplift your mindset and infuse your spirit with Sunshine and Joy. Valencia Key has been created to share inspiration in the form of personally hand-sketched innovative, beautiful creations. Each Valencia Key creation is birthed from authentic life-inspiring messages.


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From homeless to 100 million homes, Lia Valencia Key shares how she went from living in a shelter and suffering tragic loss to designing her own jewelry line and being featured on one of the world’s biggest stages. 

Your heart center, energy, unintentional, or intentional radiates about three feet beyond. It’s going to go out regardless so you can choose the light that you put out in the world and dictated as joy and dictated as love and dictated. Welcome to the M perfectly empowered podcast with leading DIY lifestyle blogger on.
We’re women are inspired with authentic stories and practical strategies to reclaim their hearts and homes by empowering transformation. One imperfect day at a time. Hello, and welcome back to another episode of the imperfectly empowered podcast. I am your host on a former today. We have Leah Valencia.
On the podcast. Leo went from living in a homeless shelter with her mother, sister, and brother as a little girl to the stage with Oprah as a successful business woman. In spite of her humble beginnings, Leah founded the Valencia key jewelry company jewelry personally designed by Leah herself that she calls wearable joy.
Pieces to remind you that anything is possible. Valencia key jewelry launched on QVC and has been featured on dozens of platforms. She has shared the stage with the likes of Oprah, Brendon Burchard and Tony Robbins from homeless to 100 million homes. Welcome my friend and personal Ray of sunshine, Leah Valencia.
Looking at you. You’re so pretty.
I love your yellow. I love your yellow. So I have to tell everyone, I first met you at a conference and you had something else beforehand. So you came in a little bit late and you were at my table and it was a round table discussion. So Leah comes in. She literally not only is her personality, array of sunshine, but you look like a Ray of sunshine.
She comes in and I mean, every head turns because Leah just lights up a room. She comes in and she’s so sweet and smiley. Anyway. That’s like the instant impression that I had of you. So I love you literally where joy. Yeah, we’re all like this. Smiling. Thank you. That’s my dream. So thank you for hearing that makes me say my prayers, the answer, just to put a smile on someone.
So I have to ask you is yellow. How did you come to the place where yellows your color? Yeah, it was a journey when I decided that I was going to jump and really. Brian Valencia key jewelry to the world when you’re creating a gift, my inspiration they’re my, I call them my sisters. My mentor is Jamie Kern, Lima, founder of it, cosmetics and New York times bestseller.
Believe it, book and Vicki PSI creative touches skincare. I mentioned their two names because they took me under their wing and I was able to be around beautiful women that really had a passion to give. Something of love to the world. When I saw that they did that and full and tension from every aspect of what they were giving it, you call him in the form of a company or product, but they were giving us gifts.
Everything was intentional because it had a mission. So seeing that, that’s why I light inspires light. I realized like, what am I giving to the world? What does that mean? And that’s first how I came up with my name. It is ironic. That is my middle and last name and team needs to analyze. But I was so far against using my name.
I’m like, Ugh, I don’t want to use it if it doesn’t have purpose, because I want it to really. Impact lives when you receive it, so, okay. Okay. The name’s gray. I’m coming. Okay. Love the name. Yes. I want to unlock the bravery. That’s when my whole journey. I’m sure we’ll dive into that. Unlocking light, unlocking perseverance and break.
I’m like, yes, that’s what I want to get to the world. But visual is the one to me, the most empowering impactful thing, because normally, normally before someone hears you. They see, or they feel you. And so before you can say a word before you can get your mission, impact out, someone needs to feel it. And how do you feel things it’s through visual and color is one of the most powerful, emotional grabbers.
If we’re not aware of that. You can evoke emotion in someone just by color. And that’s how I went down the discovery. So then what is that color? What do I want to bring to the world in the form of color? And my journey has been going from immense darkness. To literally light and light yellow. And so yellow is energetic color that when you think of energy, think of light, you think a yellow, and then I start really getting into it and I’m like, oh, that’s it.
But then when I bodied it to whoever’s listening, when you decide on something that feels really good to you. Take it on 1000%. So then it became me and I just started realizing like, it is an emotional game changer, yellow. It makes anyone smile. It makes me smile. Even when I don’t feel like it. I love it.
You mentioned that, you know, you came from a place of darkness to this place of light, literally and figuratively. Tell me a little bit about that backstory and how really your mom ultimately inspired what kind of the original inspiration for your jewelry. So give me a little bit of that story. Yes.
Thank you for allowing me to share that to your hearts. Cause I love speaking where I come from because I feel that seeing other people’s journey is empowered. Am I there any, when I say it starts in darkness, I was born in poverty. I was born in one of the most impoverished neighborhoods of Philadelphia.
Actually, I looked up when I’m researching, I’m putting, when I do more talks, I’m researching one of the places I live and it’s dilapidated and abandoned now because it was one of the most violent, impoverished, dangerous. Areas is labeled in Philadelphia and I’m like, wow. So that’s what I was born into.
And that darkness looks like violence on every corner, drug addictions, all around you, profanity, hopelessness, all of that. And that went from darkness to destitute. When my mother had a major bad accident and broke her leg in several places. So we lost our home. What we call home. Initially, we lived on.
Someone’s dilapidated basement. So it was like one basic room, but that was home to us. And that was still darkness, but there was a point of time where my mother can’t work anymore. And we were picked out of that and we were homeless and we had no place to go. And that went to hopelessness because if anyone ever has experienced homelessness or have heard of.
And if you haven’t, I’ll just give you a picture. Is the one I experiences. They put a gym, like a gym size, like a big old room. I was just wondering. With cats and their children, and all you have is a cut for your children. And so you hear all the sorrow, all the tears, all the other, the anger inside just right around you, 24 7 every day.
And that’s what I lived in for several years of my life. And that was darkness. And my mother, as soon as we were put in a homeless shelter, And it was all this sorrow around us. I remember I loved Shanice cause she looked down at her children and she told us your predicament does not determine your destiny.
And I think that’s so powerful because someone today, even listening is in a predicament, not the predicament I was in. But it’s a predicament. It’s challenging. It feels rough. It feels heavy. And sometime you want to feel like you just want to succumb to that or that’s all it is, but this is my life. And so I’m going to speak those words into your hearts today that whatever your predicament has, it’s not your destiny and your destiny is within you.
It really is. It it’s a living light within you and you hear it. But then the next thing is choice. Yeah. Now, how were you, what was the age range for you those years that you were living in the, and I black a lot out to be accurate, but I love remembering from grade perspective, I was in around third grade when we first went to the homeless shelter and we stayed in the homeless shelter.
We were shuffled around to different types of homeless shelters. But I stayed in a homeless shelter until about fifth or sixth grade. And then they shuffled us to a place called a housing project, which is still a homeless shelter. It’s like now everyone is just in a bigger area and you actually have a room, a little more space, but it is everyone that’s impoverished and the area we’re living on public assistance.
And I lived there until college. I was around that environmental college. I remember certain people didn’t never even left that environment. Yeah. And I, it, where my mother told me then, cause I start to follow. I start to listen to what was around me and I started to fail and become my environment and the next powerful thing, which I released.
Turning the light on in my life was I was coming. We were still in the homeless shelter at this time and I was coming back and my mother asked me, she stopped me right at the door. And she said, do you want to be a follower? Or do you want, want to be a leader? And this is about fifth grade perspective around that time.
So I’m still young and I totally didn’t get it. I’m like it says she continues. And she says, cause right now your father. You’re following everything we’re in, you’re following all the horrible stuff that you see. And guess what I’m gonna tell you right now, this is what you’re going to do. Hm, or you can choose to leave.
She said you can choose to leave your life. I love pausing on that. I started breaking that down like now was like, she didn’t say lead others. She literally say you can lead your life. The most powerful thing to lead is your life. And she said, when you in this life and you is your destiny, your predicament does not determine your destiny.
So now Leah, you choose. And she walked away. There was no directive. There was no orders. There was no anger. There was a great picture. Paint it for me. And we here’s where you are. Here’s where you can be. And now I’m going to put it in your hands and I love it. I’m like, thank you for putting it in my hands.
And at fifth grade at such a young age, I got it. And I’m grateful to have gotten it. No, I hope so. Right now we can be told a lot of stuff. Right. I can sit in on workshops and everything I’m receiving it, but I’m not getting it. And stuff goes over my head and I don’t, but some things you get and you can take it and instantly put it into life application.
And that session youngest. I was flooded with light from those beautiful words from my mother. I went right back the next day. So I remember vividly my mom walking away. And I remember me standing there, little niece stands in there like, whoa, like I don’t have to beat this because I thought that you see you do, like, I really thought this it.
And I was like, I get to listen to what I really want it. I don’t want to do this. Okay. Got it. Choosing chooses in my life. Let me go ask my teachers, how do I get my grades up? So I love to share this in creating jewelry. I realized because I hand schedule talk about like how we got to the jewelry book. I hand sketch every design out.
My inspiration is that it’s wearable, light and wearable joy to remind you. And so I’m trying to create designs that will trigger these thoughts for you when no one else is there. When you can’t remember the plaid kiss or you remember the podcast, but then there’s a visual to connect you with it, right?
Yeah. And then, so when I’m designing these, and then I send it to a manufacturer. I realize the power of a millimeter. Now, I wasn’t great in math actually. And I became a math teacher, but move on. Ted’s there, but I wasn’t great as a younger and pass, but when I start realizing the power of math and how important.
And millimeter is meaning. If the manufacturer takes my hand sketch and I put a certain millimeter sizing on it and they make it one millimeter bigger, it becomes less luxurious feeling and looking and they make it one millimeter, less. It breaks like that’s the power of these small moons. So then I started looking back at my life and in my current life, and I start to realize the power of just making milometer choices, meaning these very small minute choices that will literally change the trajectory of your life.
It will make you, and it will break you just as well as jewelry. Right? It’s so beautiful. So that first thing I did as a young girl was go back and do a millimeter to. One question, how t-shirt, how can I get good grades that Melanie choice just starts spiraling in to other choices and other choices? And I realized, I wasn’t just choosing these tangible things.
I was choosing light and I was choosing life and I was choosing my destiny that was inside of me. And I think that’s a beautiful message to share to hearts that are listening. Take millimeter choices. You can have huge big dreams, or you can have a situation where you want to get out of, but you don’t know how take a millimeter choice and that choice will start inching up and can create major impact and changing it.
I love that Leah. Cause it speaks exactly to what I talk about all the time, which is that concept that if we want to truly empower transformation in our life, then we need to take it one imperfect day at a time. And it is exactly what you’re saying. It’s that concept of millimeter choices, you know, you just take it one at a time.
It may be really tiny, but like you’re saying. Those choices can have exponential impact. And I’m also hearing from you as a mother. I’m also hearing the importance of the. Words that we say and the impact that those have. And I just think of my children. My daughter is in third grade. And what you’re saying is resonating with me, just this concept that I also have the power of my words to help inspire choice.
But like you’re saying at the end of the day, it is still. A decision that you have to make, and you truly took that sense of motivation and converted it into discipline because you have a bachelor’s in business. Then you got a master’s in education, a cosmetology instructors license, a U S patent. I mean, you’ve defined the concept of shattering glass ceilings.
And if you could sum up in one word. The secret to success, and I think you may have already hit on it, but what would you say that is? You went from homeless shelter to all of these achievements. What is the key? I think you’ve kind of touched on it, but what would you say, honestly? I really think. Okay.
There’s two important keys. Like if you all, if you the only, and there was a key box and I was like, I want to grab one to know, I need you to get an Andrews, grab two. And the two keys that I need you to grab to help you unlock the life that’s waiting for you and life changes at what I also want to say is don’t get stuck in the life that you’re in and no matter how great is.
If there’s greatness, there’s more greatness waiting for you. And that’s not greed. That’s not being ungrateful. God has be loving greatness in all of our lives. So we’ll embrace involving greatness, but there’s two things I would first say the power of choosing through action, meaning choice to me starts in the brain.
But that choice needs to manifest into believing. You’ll hear Jamie Kern, Lima. Her book is called the leave it. I say it always fun books. I love so much because I love it. Like choice and belief are two. They got to live in the same round. It’s almost like one concept. You choose it. Then you choose to believe it because believing creates the actual.
You can choose something. And if you don’t believe it, you won’t do it right. You’re like, oh yeah, I want to do that. That how many things that we said we want to do, but you don’t really believe in it enough, so it doesn’t create action. So I need you to combine those two words as one key. Choose it so much that you believe it.
And when you believe it, it infectiously forces you to make some type of action. Tony Robins says, make a move. It happens. But the second most powerful key is your inner light, your inner being and your inner energy. You can get a lot of things, not being kind. I’m sure you can, to me, it’s going to be a really hard road to get there.
So what I chose above all is my energy. I’m not the best at anything. I’m not the best hairstylist. I’m not the best, whatever, fill in the blank. But what I know is really great is my heart and my energy. I will change the atmosphere around me. I will bring stuffy, tide, anger to joyful loving light, and I’ve decided to be that.
And when I decided to be that people feel that because that energy is a magnet. And challenging negative energy is an opposite magnet, so it repulses and repels people away. So you get further away from people and distance and action, but positive, loving, joyful, peaceful energy is literally an grabs people to you.
And then people start to pull you forward. So you may not be the best at anything, but be the best in your heart. Find a way to get a good heart, become love. I root myself and love. My second collection is title rooted because I was looking over it. It was storms happening in my life and I’m still feeling strong and I’m still standing.
And I’m like, how is this possible? And I’m feeling joy in my heart and I’m still loving. And I’m like, because I’m rooted myself. I was with it. One of the companies I work with Tasha skincare, it’s a monk and he was a Japanese brand. So we get to speak to him. I got a blessing to speak to him, but went to Japan.
And I asked him, like, what’s a number on rural. Like you asked me, what’s an uncle on rule of life. And he said to find your roots, he said, it’d be like a tree. And so that, that was so powerful to me. And I started to realize that is so real. If you root yourself in defining emotions and actions of bees, Storms will come.
Your branches will break off. Liezel fly away, but you will still be standing, but your roots have to be pure. My roots are love, peace, joy, perseverance, and believing. I’m rooted in that, no matter what comes my way either when my human crops up and I start to feel like acting against that, I recheck in my brain and say, Leah is that little.
When you walk in this room, what is love gonna look like? Well, love is patient love is kind, love is slow to anger. Love is open, so be love. And when I’m not being loved when I’m getting angry, because I’m human. Cause I can get angry real quickly. That’s not lovely. It’s like, so I’m bring it back to them.
So if you root and through these things, it’s this core value is the second key. If you get your core, love and full of life. The human energy around, you will take your dreams and pull them forward. So I’m hearing and correct me if I’m wrong. If I’m summarizing, really what I’m hearing you say is that the key to unlocking the life that you want is to ultimately.
Choose joy. So really period. Yeah. Period. We’re done. That’s it? Podcasts. Dover.
When join light light is the precursor to joy like light. Is it energy? I’m doing this study cause I’m really like trying to really narrow this thing down to science and we are all creative energy it’s facts. And our energy comes from my heart. And our heart center radiates. This is mathematical science, your heart center, energy unintentional, or intentional radiates, about three feet beyond you.
What is the impact of the three feet that you’re giving out? You can let it be intentional mean, and I’m choosing to radiate joy. That three feet. It’s going to go out regardless. So you can choose the light that you put out in the world and dictated as joy and dictated as love and dictator that’s peace, or you can be let it be erratic energy and let your human self take over.
And sometimes it’s nasty and sometime it’s anger and sometimes nice. And sometimes it’s not. And then that energy is not stationary. So people don’t even know what they’re going to receive something three feet regardless, but they don’t know what they’re receiving. Or you can intend to give out three feet beyond you, what people are receiving so they know what they’re getting.
And when people in the world know what they’re getting from you, they want it, especially when it’s good. And that would change the trajectory of your life. I think what. So crucial to highlight about a story like yours. It’s easy to hear the success story and you do have such a joy and infectious light about you, but I think it’s important for people to hear and to understand that the concept of joy.
Is not necessarily the absence of grief. It doesn’t mean that there aren’t trials that there isn’t really difficult moments. And I think that is the important thing to highlight because unfortunately with social media and even these snapshots like podcasts, it’s so easy to just now see this joyful, successful woman, but it’s so crucial to highlight that you have been through.
Struggle. There have been a lot of trials and instead of skipping over them, you choose to go through them and you made that choice. But tell me a little bit, is there a moment that you can think of in that journey where maybe it was in college, maybe it was in your mat. Was there ever a point where you were like, I.
Can’t do this. Like, did you ever struggle with doubt or just that sense of, I don’t know if I’m gonna be able to get through this and how did you approach it? What was your mindset like? And then how did you push through that mentality so that it converted the action? Like you said, can you think of a time like that, that.
Every day. Amen. We don’t have to go back in history. We can go back to them yesterday. I mean, probably when I’m listening to John Maxwell at leadership training and he was saying that he calls when leadership, but anything that’s some big. Reach for you. It’s an uphill battle. Life is an uphill battle.
Truthfully, if you just stay there like a stagnant lay there, life is still going to be hard, right? Because life, you don’t know what you’re going to get in life. Even if you’re not trying to do anything is hard. But then when you add on a dream, you get your regular lifestyle and then you get your dreams that out God it’s heavy, but I will say.
I was talking to a friend yesterday and we were talking, cause I went to Penn state for my undergraduate degree. And as I said, I blacked out stuff, but we, she went to Penn state. So these Penn state vision start to come back and I’m like, oh yeah. And then I realized my mother was dying while I was trying to make it through college.
Literally Ben written. Her legs swollen, the size of tree trunks and dying the entire time. And I believe she passed before I blacked that out. But before I graduated college, And I’m trying to make it through. I’ve got this opportunity to be in school. And I know I want to go beyond where I come from and I know this is giving me exposure to see something bigger, but my mother’s in Philadelphia dying.
And so I’m managing, going back, trying to get back to Philadelphia and then trying to get back to school. And it’s that moment of how do you do it? Do you give up, do you let yourself die with your mother? Do you give all your schooling up? And what I knew was I had to live, I had to live because my mother wanted me to live.
Right. And of course I physically wasn’t going to die, but I believe there’s a such thing as living dead, meaning you’ve given up hope. You’ve given up all possibility. And that’s living dead to me. And so I could choose that or I could choose to take my mother’s words, wasn’t in dream and embody it to a hundred percent concept of fully living and take the life that she was having and losing and magnify it.
And that’s what I chose to do. So when I think of these really hard times that I have, I don’t allow them to. Take me to where it is. I allow it to push me forward to where it wants me to be mean. And my mother puts so much beauty in me through the power word. She was a wordsmith. She couldn’t get out of bed, but she could write something.
What you want to write a letter and get something changed. So you will write a letter and change the whole him. I used hand it, just give him this letter. The letter said the whole school would be. So she had the power of word. I don’t have the power of writing like she did, but she had the power and the power of writing.
And I said, well, this is a gift that will live in me ever lasting. And so I’m going to magnify that gift 100% and I’m going to honor it. And so that’s how I choose to look at every challenge in my life. What is it giving me not what is it depleting? Not what am I losing? Yeah, but what am I getting from it?
Even from the struggle, what am I learning from it? And then I’m a cry. Of course I get sorrow. I also, one of my other keys is I give myself not for loss, not for the loss of my mother. I lost three major pillars in my life. And a matter of years, my mother and my grandmother and my aunt in a matter of years.
And that takes some time, but I did still choose to live through all of that. And I give myself limited time to be paralyzed in sadness, meaning, okay, you got 48 hours to cry and I want you to give it all the cry you got. You could stay in the bed under your blanket. I love a blanket and don’t move and just cry and tell it.
And you got 24, maybe I’ll give it seven, whatever. I put a time limit on it, whatever I feel my spirit needs, but then that’s it. You can get up. You could still have the SAR with inside you, but now make a positive, challenging move towards where greatness lies, make it power and challenging, move to what you can learn from it, what that gave you.
And that moves me out of that. So I can move forward versus staying. In the current moment. Yeah. I love that. And I think that’s important for anybody listening right now to make sure you take that away. Make sure that you hear that because joy does not mean the absence of grief. They need to be allowed to co-exist allow trial to.
Push you forward. And to empower that next step, it does not happen right away, but I love the visual of that. Give yourself time. There’s a time to grieve. There’s a time to rejoice, but they don’t need to be in the absence of each other. They’re not mutually exclusive. Well, listen, we’re going to take a quick break.
When we come back, stay tuned. Speed round of this or that with Leah. And we’re going to learn practical ways from Leah to feel beautiful in the skinnier. And we’re going to talk about her jewelry and all kinds of amazing things with Leah. When we come back from this break, save time, get practical inspiration delivered to your inbox every month with exclusive access to the premier digital women’s health and home magazine for just 1499 a month, you will get delicious and nutritious recipes, essential cleaning, and organization hacks.
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Perfectly empowered journal tab to sign up for a free issue of the imperfectly empowered journal. We are back here with Leah Valencia key. All right, Leo, we’re going to do a fun speed round of this or that. You’ll get two options. Just pick one. You don’t have to overthink it. All right, here we go. Cake or pie pie.
What’s your favorite pie living? Our apple. I love lemon lemon. Yes. Pancakes or waffles? Waffles. Cause it’s the electrical, the life that is true. Philly cheese steak. Or the best Philly burger. It has to be a real Philadelphia Tuesday. I’ll take that. Yep. Where’s the best place in Philly to get a real Philadelphia cheese.
To me, you have to go into the inner city, like what they call the hood. I don’t think it’s the south street ones, but one on south street is a good one called, um, can’t remember it is one is not Gino. Sorry guys. I think of it. Just interrupt me at any time because my listeners take note. If you’re ever in Philly, we’ll let you know where the best Philly cheese sticks are.
Okay. Oh my gosh. Oh, I don’t know how to spell it. It’s kibbles.
It’s on south street since Cassandra is on landmark. So if you’re going to south street as a landmark, that’s a good shoe state. Okay. on south street. Yes. That name well it’s memorable. Alright. Gold or silver, gold all day musical or.
So hard. I’m going to have to say musical, but I love them both. Yeah. Yep. What’s your favorite musical? Well, now I gotta be biased. It has to be Hamilton. Now my dear friend, Leah Williams, dismayed to see Hamilton and surprise. I went to high school for creative and performing arts in Philadelphia. I thought I was going to be an actress.
Oh Danza. And one of my high school friends, we knew each other, at least was in the play as one of the main characters. And she looks amazing and she’s in Hamilton. If you ever have a chance to see it, she’s going to travel immersion. Amazing. Awesome. I love that. I have actually not seen it yet. I need to see it.
You see it? I do need to, first thing you noticed smile or hair smile. Winter or summer please? Summer. Hey, men, sister LA, or New York. I’ve got to say LA. Oh yes. Have you been to LA? I love LA. I will live there. That’s hilarious because everybody that lives in LA, I hear how they hate it.
It’s so funny because the people that I know that live in it or. What’s that the prices are ridiculous. I’ve been running from it too. Yeah. Well, that’s fair. That’s fair. But it’s warm. That’s really the material point. You got it. So let’s talk a little bit, in addition to your many accomplishments that we’ve chatted about, you are also a licensed.
Cosmetology instructor and you’ve done hair and makeup around the world. Did you do that in conjunction with starting your jewelry business, or was that something that you started first as you were going into jewelry? That was before that was, um, yeah, I, I went to college and I was choosing my destiny and I realized another group.
Close to my mother always told me what you got to complete. There’s no quitting in the middle. You start something. So I was in college and I’m like, I’m really creative. I knew, you know, Saraj was also kicking them cause what I was experiencing through my mother, but I also knew I was creative, but I had started business the business degree and I’m like, okay, I gotta finish it.
So I finished that. And then I was like, well, the highest thing that I would do as a master. So I went and got a master’s because that was the thing to do in the world. But then I realized I wasn’t serving myself. But this was great. That’s why I say there’s an inner whisper inside, please. Everyone listened to it.
You got to serve yourself people like, how do you have light? How do you know Julie? You’ve gotta stop being so externally driven by what the world and other people are guiding and saying, and literally go home, go inside of you and hear what your heart and your spirit and soul needs, because when you can feed those things, You can authentically give joy.
So I decided that I was going to follow what was me, what was joy to me, and it was creating. And I realized, I love drawing. I was an artist self-proclaimed in my heart and I’m like, oh, you can do art on people that I need to do.
And like in washes off, so no hair color and a bad thing. So I went, that’s how they’re going to cosmetology because I was looking at it as an art form and I was trying to follow this art passion that I had and what did it materialize into. But that whole time when I was in college and before my mother passed, she saw my light.
She saw me shining. She saw me choosing and before she paid. She told me, wow, Leah, you are shining. You are radiating. And I see it. Then she gave me these little cheap airing bulls that she pees. And she said where these earrings always, always wear your earrings and let them be a reminder that even when you can’t find them, It’s within you.
And I thought that was so powerful. Like these symbolic things, we were going through hard times, right. I was physically losing my mother and light was getting them and I could always find the light when I’ll put these earrings on. And I saw personally hand sketching. Cause you know, I’m a self-proclaimed artist for therapy for me, symbolic.
Because since my mother told me wearing this jewelry would always let me find my light. I would just be hand sketching, the sketches for me, even in college, during class, I’m like, Hey, I’m not even taking notes. I’m hand sketching reviews it. And that was just a hobby thing. And that was like joy and peace for me.
And my mother passed. I was trying to find my way to the creativity that I knew was in me. And that’s where it led me to cosmetology. And cosmetology took me on this journey. Yeah to unlock. I put a heart, so I dream a lot. I’m very clear on what I want in the world. So I’d love to, and encourage people to get clear on what you want.
Not all I kind of clear on what you want, but I knew I was going to cosmetology school and I wasn’t going to be a stylist or makeup artists in a salon and knew that, but I knew I wanted to be in a place where. My creativity was going to be consistent, like on a movie set or something. And I met a lady who worked for QVC when I was working at Mac cosmetics.
And I was like, oh, that’s it is near us. Can you see them Westchester? I’m like, uh, found that out. Didn’t know. I’m like, that’s it. They’ve got to be, no one had told me this. I’m like, they’ve gotta be doing hair and makeup 24 7 because of the 24 hour network. That’s where I want to be and sell from five years, I swept floors even with a master’s degree.
So another nugget or another key is sometimes you got to go down and to come up, meaning you have this master’s where in the world says you probably, this was making money, but I just sort to sweep salon floors to an, and get minimum wage to learn the craft of cosmetology. Short-term sacrifice for long-term goals.
Yes. And that’s where joy lies because happiness is fleeting. So sweeping the floors. Wasn’t happy. Like joy. Cause I was moving, learning to my goal and I didn’t even know how I was going to get to my goal, but this was a millimeter move. Right. I knew my first move was I had to learn. I had to get a quick education.
What I learned education is key. It’s the other light that’s unlocked from me when I learned things I can move forward. So doing that, I didn’t knew that PVC was it until I’ve set my heart on. I set my intention on QVC and I would put my resume in every year and day and whatever, and I would get denied because I didn’t have enough qualifications.
And finally, I love to share, always put your dreams out into the world and not asking people for anything, not expecting anyone to do something for you, but to get it out of your body and to give it your wings to fly. And I spoke it to everyone. It was random. You will be standing next to me and write it or any store, if you said three nice words to me, probably the next sentence is, oh my God, thank you so much.
I would have for DTC. And it just became the habit. And finally I said it to one person. I was bartending to try to survive, great gig to survive, and the person there talking over five minutes and I of course blurred out. I want to work with TVC and he’s. Oh, I know somebody. I know a friend that works there and I’m like, so my next key is don’t let society judgment block your blessing.
Cause we can judge a lot of things from previous experiences or what you think. And you could also be blocking your blessing. So I believe in that lack of my blessings and I believe in saying yes, so I said, and my shady head, but in my open spirit, my light spirits said, okay, here’s. So I get my information.
The next day, he sends me over his friends, full name and contact number. I emailed her Stephanie Humphrey, beautiful spirit friends to this day. She didn’t know me at all. That’s why I’m talking about working with your inner spirit and who you are because my inner spirit had made such an impression on this person in five minutes.
That he was able to transfer that energy to his friend to believe in me enough, someone who never met me to say, Hey, my friend said such great things about you. You want to work for QVC and you had so much passion when you said it. Here’s the person, the contact person name, email, and phone them. Wait for it.
And also you can say, I referred you. That’s what energy that’s, what positive light does it creates a magnet that you can’t even explain to pull you forward? So I did that and that is what got me truthfully at interview and the interview, I had been sweeping floors and learning grapes in line that was, teach me for five years.
So now it’s ready. So the nos are not right now. Always not right now. Maybe shift a little, maybe learn a little, maybe go back to the drum. Cause some more tools in your toolkit. Keep coming back. Because by that time I had learned to scout all different hair types and do makeup on all different people.
And I was writing. I wasn’t great. What I was ready and that’s when I got the job at QVC and then QVC on lot the exposure of possibility. I was in a salon 24 7 and I mean, 24 7, because. Shifts people would call out. I would say I’ll take it. So literally sometimes 24 hours, because it was freelance. And I was around dreamers who had business dreams and making them happen.
People who are making dreams happen, meaning the host on QVC that was taking these people during the radio. And I was 20. I was engrossed in this and that’s when Jamie currently my in Vicki side found my little. And the salon. And from that, they took me around the world and expose me to rooms that I never would have known about seeing the possibility of when you have a gift to give to the world how it can change lives.
And that’s when I realized, oh wow. Every time I stabbed them. The last thing or any person that I was styling, the last thing that they would check is like, okay, what earrings am I going to put on? What necklace, what race am I going to sell? And to me, it was like the seal of confidence, this seal of comfort, this seal of I’ve got this, the seal of light and it will always seal the deal.
It was the last thing before they did something really huge. And I’m like, wow, I’ve been sketching. These jewelry sketches just for me. But I realized that wasn’t, for me, it was my journey. It was my life’s journey from this darkness to experience and all of this light and the world encapsulated in these symbolic wearable pieces.
And that’s what people would use to go out in the world and shatter their glass ceilings and show up for themselves. And for others. And that’s when I decided to jump in, create my jewelry line. I love that. Let’s talk about your jewelry and it’s interesting that you say that because it is true. Even this morning, I put the necklace and my earrings on, so I actually am giving this to my daughter.
She doesn’t know it yet. And what’s hilarious is I had it sitting out here last night. Ready to go. And she was messing around and she said, mommy, what is this? And I said, oh, it’s. I was like, trying to get her away from, I was like, oh, it’s nothing. And she said, oh, it’s so pretty. Anyway. I was like, oh, I love it.
So that’s my story. I’ve already gotten one of these pieces here and it’s going to be passed onto my daughter and I’m going to share the message with her. And I love that she’s in third grade and just. Really resonates with my heart, your story. So I’m going to tell her about your story and she’s going to watch this podcast when it is live.
So she understands the story behind this, this necklace. Yeah,
please understand. That is my prayer answer. When I close my eyes and I dream of what impact Valencia key jewelry does. It’s mothers gifting it to their daughters and passing that light on and telling them that all things are possible telling them that you can shatter glass ceilings and sharing them that if you decide to choose light and radiation, Light has to come back like that is because it’s one thing to give it to yourself.
But how precious is it for a mother to gift it to their daughter? That’s another level of honor. So it was getting me a little choked up over here. So, let let send it back to you. I would love to hear you are wearing, of course, several of your pieces. You have several of your pieces hanging and you guys listen, this jewelry has been featured all over the place.
Oprah has featured your jewelry, right? Thanks magazine. So this is so fun. I love the fact that multiple people around the world even are buying these pieces of jewelry. So I highly encourage you as you look at these pieces and she talks about them to think about her story, how you could share her story with somebody through the jewelry and especially consider mother’s giving it to your daughter.
So Leah, tell us about some of your jewelry pieces. Yes. I love everything is symbolic. And my line, as I stated, Valencia means bravery or strength, and the key is an unlock. And if you look so I decided that every piece that I create is going to have the logo. And I created the logo on that’s a whole nother pocket on ice girl.
You’ll come back, we’ll bring you back. But the logo is symbolic and it’ll be an every piece. And if you look closely at it, it’s four of these. So it’s four symbolic forms of strength and bravery that creates a star, which is your light. And then I placed the key in the center. So you have the power to unlock.
Always within, and that will be everywhere. You see? And if you come close the rooted collection, I love because everything is stainless steel, but I created, which is a very hard metal I created because it’s so Doris. But you’ll see these routes we through and then you’ll see the light shining through with the symbol.
So when you reach out, you’re reminded to whatever words you choose. Stay rooted in that, no matter when the storms that come in and whatever lights you chose, shine it within. I also love just really simple classic pieces. I don’t know if you can really see that. I love those little bracelets. Those would also make a great gift.
I considered. ’cause I knew I wanted to give it to my daughter, which honestly, like, it really makes me tear up because I didn’t know all the details of that story with your mother. So I love that that is so special to me, but those would be another great one for daughters. I think those bracelets, this, I think I created this like honestly, when I was sketching it, I really felt subconsciously I was creating it for that mother daughter loves.
Because this one is a heart. I don’t know if you can see it that good, but it’s a heart with the star, with the key in it. And then the key on the other side. So it’s, you’re the light of my life and you can always unlock my love. You can always unlock your love. And I think that’s just a wonderful gift to give someone, to let them know.
You are the center light of my life and heart, and people can know that they are loved. Sometime we walk around. The world feeling that we’re not loved and to have a symbolic, like I’m loved. I think it’s just so touching to me. So everything that I create, I want it to be these mental triggers to help you keep shattering your ceilings or pushing towards your dreams.
But also because this world is a we thing I’ve done nothing alone. And everything I’ve done. Everything you hear is because I called them earth angels have literally caught my light and lifted me higher. So when I think of when you wear a Valencia key, I feel it’s, you’re connecting into a community of hearts, a community of love, a community.
Family where we are believing to be great. And then when I see you wear it and you’re doing your podcast and you’re right in, I was actually smiling with seeing you where the key to light necklace and you radiating and such power and such glow doing your podcast. Cause then it inspires others that it’s possible for them.
My dream and goal is to radiate this message so far around the world. That you were Valencia key. And when someone else is looking, they see that symbol, they see that story key in it, and they know that you’re telling them without you saying a word it’s possible for you. Yeah. You see me in my life and I’m shining so bright that I can inspire you to shine with me so that we can uplift the world together and we can keep having.
Hearts go to where their dreams and live beyond what their predicament it is. And I know it’s going to happen. Amen. That’s right. Your jewelry is just such a practical, tangible wearable reminder of your message to choose joy, to believe. You can achieve it. Your website is www dot Valencia key. That is V a L E N C I a K E, where you can see all of these beautiful pieces of jewelry and she is offering this incredible discount code.
Use the code light, L I G H T for 25%. Off. And I also want to encourage people. You are. An incredible speaker. You have an incredible story and message to share. If somebody would like to get ahold of you in order to have you come speak. And I would especially like to encourage, if any of you are teachers or administrators or you need speakers.
I mean, there’s here an hour of material. I mean, this is just an hour ish. There’s so many things that she can expand on here. So I would love for you to be able to have contact, to reach out and we’ll make sure all of these links, all of these addresses are on the blog post with show notes. Leo, where would somebody want to contact you if they would like to speak with you some more?
Uh, that is my literal dream to. Speak to hearts as many hearts as I can. So thank you. That’s a prayer answer, which you just did it for me. I love you. You can contact me on my email. Leah L I For any speaking engagements are really this message to keep being spread because in the world today, right now, if anything we need is more light in the world and more love in the world.
All right. And I just think more women need to hear your story, especially moms, because. I mean, I can’t even tell you what it means to me to hear how much your mom’s words, even in physical and capacity. We just forget some times as moms, especially the power of our words for good and for bad. And so I think that is such a message.
More of us moms need to hear. And then I love that we can gift our daughters, not just the power of words, but then the reminder of those words through your jewelry. And then I think more teenagers need to hear your story, girls and boys. We need to get her into our schools. We need to get you into our schools.
So anyway, anyone listening, I would love to challenge you to really contact her and have her. Come speak because we do, we need that message. We need that message more. Well, I want to read something here quick. Well, we end this here. The box that my jewelry came in, it says on it. When I have to open it here, it says for dreamers, believers, and achievers, but dreamers, beautiful journey where if you believe it, you can achieve it.
Inspiring life with style. Aliyah. I am truly honored to call you a friend and I just pray for continued joy over your life and over your business. I truly pray that God blesses it and continues to send your message out so many people need to hear it. And thank you so much for sharing your story with us.
Thank you with all my heart, for believing in me and allowing me to share my love to your loves. It needs the world to me. And thank you everyone. That’s listening. I love you. I believe in you and whatever your heart desires, your predicament, Devon, determining your destiny. And even if you’re in great neck.
There are still greater. If you choose it, that’s what you want for yourself to believe it, to be true and go for it. Amen. The best is yet to come. Thanks, Leah. Thank you so much for joining us for this episode of the imperfectly empowered podcast. It is my honor to be here with you. So grateful for each and every one of you.
If you are watching on YouTube, be sure to click the subscribe button below. So you don’t miss a show and leave a comment with your thoughts from today’s episode below. If you are listening via your preferred podcasting platform, would you help keep us on the air by rating our show and leaving an honest review of your thoughts from today in case you haven’t heard it lately, your story matters and you are loved.
This is your host on a former, and I will see you here next time on the imperfectly empowered.

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