Mom, Wife, Entrepreneur and Author – Stacy Hester-Lockett discusses with us the importance of finding the beauty in her struggles while fearlessly walking in her purpose.
Stacy has always had a love for the performing arts which led to her career as a professional NFL dancer that she has now retired from and has chosen to now empower and encourage young girls through her own dance company – Pro Status Houston, her new found ministry She Is Strong, and her recently #1 Bestselling Children’s book on Amazon, “Beautiful Girl, Do You Know?”. Check out more of Stacy’s inspirational story below.
Tell us a bit about PRO Status and why you chose to open your own Dance Studio?
I have had a passion for Fine Arts since the age of 3. Growing up, I attended predominantly white competitive cheer gyms and studios and as a black dancer, I often felt inferior and overlooked. It was my dream as a child to open my own studio where black and brown dancers wouldn’t feel neglected or feel as if their gifts and talents weren’t enough. Once I retired from being a Professional Dancer in the NFL, I established PRO Status in 2011. PRO is committed to empowering, educating and providing quality services to youth in the Houston community in the areas of tumbling, dance and cheer and to prepare them to reach PROfessional status in their future careers. My goal is to create endless opportunities in impacting these brown and black dancers through leadership and spiritual mentorship by providing a safe environment of positivity that instills self-worth and confidence.
You’re not only an entrepreneur but an author as well. You have a new children’s book titled, “Beautiful Girl, Do You Know?”. Dear Readers is all about Inspirational books, so this was exciting to see! What inspired you to want to write your first children’s book? Please let us know a bit about it and where we can get a copy.
As an Educator and Coach, I have a strong passion for youth and mentorship. I see many young people seek validation from various social media platforms to determine their worth. They lack confidence in themselves and self-love. It grieved my heart to see so many young people fall to the pressures of social media and the standards it has for beauty and appearance. If we pour into our girls when they are young, they will grow up with a Godly confidence. After fervent prayer, God put it on my heart to write “Beautiful Girl, Do You Know?” This beautifully illustrated children’s book is designed to build confidence and knowledge of God’s word. It will teach girls everywhere not only who they are but whose they are. “Beautiful Girl, Do You Know” launches on July 17, 2020 and will be available on Amazon and Kindle.
With being a mom, a wife, an entrepreneur and an author, how have you been able to balance it all or do you even believe in “balance” at this point?
Honestly, it can be a lot juggling Motherhood, being a wife and running a business, but I made the decision to have an attitude of gratitude in spite of what my flesh may feel. I do get exhausted at times, but I look at all I’ve accomplished as a blessing and a gift. I keep myself centered by keeping God in the center of all that I do. I begin each day in devotion and prayer, thanking God for all He has done, all He will do and all He has shielded me from. When I keep my focus on the goodness of God, it keeps everything in balance.
With all that you are doing throughout your journey of fulfilling your purpose, there can be a lot of “Noise” that can become distractions. What has “Noise” looked like to you during your journey and how do you block out the “Noise”?
Noise to me is the enemy creeping in to make me feel like I’m not equipped to fulfill the purpose destined for my life. The devil is very strategic when it comes to “distractions” and distractions come in all forms. When the enemy knows that you have purpose, He will do everything he can to try and stop you. The devil comes to steal, kill and destroy and he is determined to stop people from walking in victory. Whether it’s people doubting or trying to deter me from the path God set for me, or me constantly criticizing my work or over thinking business decisions; it can cause a lot of “noise,” in my head. Therefore being grounded in God’s word helps to cast out these distractions. If the “noise” doesn’t line up with the word, my spirit reminds me that it is a ploy from the enemy and I immediately cast it out.
Although walking in your purpose can bring so much joy due to you being on a path of doing what God has created you to do and be who he has created you to be, the journey will definitely have its ups and downs. Being a mom of two beautiful girls, what do you tell your daughters as well as show your daughters when it comes to the importance of staying motivated and inspired when things may not go their way and how to believe in themselves no matter what?
There is beauty in the struggle and as their mother I have suffered a great deal from health issues, public scrutiny, anxiety, depression and suicidal ideation. The season of darkness in my life is what plummeted me into my purpose. God delivered me from the pit and I found purpose in my pain. I use my personal trials as examples to teach my daughters perseverance. They will not have a spirit that easily gives up or throws in the towel, nor will I allow them to feel defeated. I instill in them that no matter what struggles may come their way, they are to persevere and keep striving. I refuse to allow the spirit of defeat to overtake them. I remind them that in this life you will have trials, you will make mistakes and you may fail at some things, but you are to never give up. If God is for you, it doesn’t matter who’s against you. He is your vindicator and He will bring you through. I teach them positive affirmations to declare over themselves daily and remind them that they are tiny but mighty. They are warriors.
Outside of owning your own dance studio and being an author, you recently became the founder of “She Is Strong” Ministries. I absolutely love how you make it a point to use all of your platforms to be an encourager for others to overcome whatever they have been through in order to keep moving forward no matter what. Why is it important for you to continuously empower children, teenagers and women?
I believe that God turned my misery into my ministry so that I could bring others into a relationship with Him and help them to overcome their struggles as well. Healed people help heal people and I want to see as many people set free as possible. We were not placed on earth to live a life of captivity and bondage in our minds. God wants us to live victoriously, redeemed and free. There are so many women and young girls who have an “identity crisis.” They don’t know who they are and they lack confidence and value. The enemy continues to plant lies in their heads to make them feel worthless. Whether it’s a mother who is broken from her childhood who can’t pour into her own daughter or a daughter who seeks validation and acceptance from the wrong crowds, I feel that my Godly assignment is to encourage, educate and inspire women and girls through God’s biblical truth and to help them walk in victory.
You are definitely a Hustler with a Purpose and I think so many women can learn from your story. What advice would you give to people who are looking to become an entrepreneur?
You must believe in yourself, challenge yourself, take risks, set goals and surround yourself with like-minded individuals who are driven and determined to be successful. Know that you will make mistakes, but mistakes will help you grow. Choose to have a spirit that never gives up despite trials or opposition. Be accepting of constructive criticism and feedback from mentors and experts. Also, your environment is key to your success. Once I made the decision to become an entrepreneur, my surroundings had to change. God had to change my circle so that He could change my life. I no longer surrounded myself with individuals who were lackluster and who had no aspirations. I needed people who were going to push me past my comfort zone and into my purpose.
What is your Inspirational message that you would like to leave with our readers to help them to continue to be their best and do their best while being on their journey of pursuing their purpose?
We all get one life and we must live this one with love, compassion, forgiveness and grace. Choose to wake up and live fearlessly with Faith, knowing that God has a purpose and a plan for you. Find the beauty in every storm and know that there is always sunshine after the rain. Have an attitude of gratitude and be thankful no matter what comes your way, good or bad. In all things, keep God first and choose Joy because there is joy in every journey.
You can grab “Beautiful Girl, Do You Know” here, Stacy Lockett’s newly released and #1 Bestselling Children’s Book on Amazon.
Be sure to follow Stacy on Instagram @prostacylockett