By ALESHA CADET
Tribune Features Reporter
LISA NICHOLS is one of the world’s most-requested motivational speakers, as well as a media personality and corporate CEO whose global platform has reached nearly 80 million people. From a struggling single mom on public assistance to a millionaire entrepreneur, Lisa’s courage and determination has inspired fans worldwide to discover their own untapped talents and infinite potential.
She spoke with Tribune Woman about her Bahamian love story – her relationship and engagement to Marcellus Hall, a sports reporter for REV Cable – ahead of her wedding day this Friday, March 11.
“When my son was 10 years, I said to him with no awareness of the future that when mommy is done raising you, I am going to move to white sand beaches and clear blue waters. I didn’t have any knowing of when or how, but the Caribbean has always provided an energy that calms my soul. This part of the world does something for me spiritually. The islands have always been the haven I ran to during major shifts in my life. It was the place I came to heal when I had my hysterectomy and when my heart was broken. I came to the islands to exhale, release and recalibrate. Unlike different parts of the world, the sun, calm seas symbolised steadiness to me,” said the 55-year-old.
Lisa met Marcellus in Kingston, Jamaica, while they were both on a business trip over eleven years ago. They talked for eleven hours straight, until she had to leave the country and return to her home in California.
“Marcellus messaged me once a month saying hello and checking on my son and me for the next eight years. Yes, for eight years he pinged me with just a ‘Hello, how are you and Jelani doing?’. I never caught on that he actually liked me and wanted to see what was possible until 2018 when I saw one of his many messages, and then it all clicked. I immediately called him, and as they say, the rest is history. The story is so fascinating to many that it's even been picked up on international television, leading publications and beyond. I share the entire love story in full colour on my Lisa Nichols podcast series called ‘Journey to Nuptials’, or you can simply go to CountDowntoHappilyEverHalls.com and see the love journey as well as meet our Bahamian wedding partners,” she said.
“I didn't know that I would fall in love with a man who lived in the islands, but I believe it just validated that this was where I was supposed to be.”
Lisa said there is so much to love about the Bahamas; it holds a special place in her heart because it continues to bring her the same peace that she shared with her son nearly 18 years ago.
“I have enjoyed the epic scenic views, family-oriented culture, the flavourful dishes, and the hope of long-lasting roots. I haven’t had the opportunity to explore as much as I would like to due to the pandemic, but I hope to very soon become even more immersed in the rich culture of my new home. I am giving myself permission to focus on my new family, being a good life partner and bonus mom to the two angels that came with this love. Then secondly, as a global transformational leader, the first virtual empowerment event after my marriage to Marcellus, ‘Extraordinary You’ happens April 29. I’m so excited to open up this platform for people who are looking for more out of their life to join us learn how to push past limiting thinking, set and hit big goals and build a team of gladiators around you. Many of the Bahamian people who are committed to both personal and business development are currently on my virtual campuses and are already being empowered to live their best life and I welcome anyone to join,” she said.
Under the theme “New Family Reunion”, Lisa said on her wedding day, she and Marcellus will be taking a bunch of people who have never met before to a paradise location.
“Family is at the centre of Marcellus’ and my heart, and we want this celebration to reflect our gratitude for the relationships that have shaped us into who we are today. We also know that in these high-tension, low-touch times, we all can use some fun. So, whether it’s at the karaoke night, fishing excursion, island-wide scavenger hunt, Sunday brunch, harbour cruise, pole dancing or the jewellery-making class, we have planned a series epic experiences that invites our guests to reach across cultural, country and nationality lines and build some amazing memories that can’t be tainted by all that’s happening in the world right now,” she said.
“Obviously, I’m excited about my wedding day, but I think that I am literally equally excited about hosting so many people to play so much on the beautiful island of Nassau that I now get to call my home.”
Speaking of the Bahamian vendors being used for the wedding day, Lisa said when she initially moved to the Bahamas, 42 days later the country was completely shut down. She watched as many entrepreneurs she had befriended prior to moving here struggled to keep their businesses alive.
“I made the decision that for my wedding I would reach out and form partnerships with Bahamian businessmen/women. Now that was a huge decision because my international community had already made me promise that should I ever get married that they would be my wedding partners. I called each person and I said, ‘I want to help some really talented and hungry for success entrepreneurs who have been working hard to be seen for their contribution gain international exposure.’ My goal was to give Bahamian small businesses that do great work a chance to be seen by more people. In addition to the exposure, I also gave them, within our partnership, business development training to assist them in their next-level strategies. This partnership has been wildly successful and I believe that it has turned some of their flickers into a re-imagined flame,” she said.
Some of the local wedding partners are Chevette Williamson Jewllery, Bahamas Luxury Concierges, Fusion Superplex, fashion designer David Rolle, KIS Bespoke, Relish, Mother of Earth Distribution, makeup artist Glow and Glamour, T & T Media, DJ AI, Five Seasons Bridal, Black Sail Tours, The Paper Clutch, photographer Scharad Lightbourne, Roxy Catering, the Cheesecake Diva, among others.
With her love story, Lisa hopes to inspire other women to put their happiness first.
“As a mother, we often begin to put ourselves last after all other things and people. I’d love inspire us to get back up to the front of our own lines. Serve ourselves first by filling up our cups, then serving others from our overflow,” she said.
Lisa also wants her fellow women to prioritise their health.
“I want to inspire women in health and wellness because I was obese for 19 years before losing nearly 100 pounds. We wear a jacket of weight and because we can wear it well, we think that it’s OK. Our life’s purpose, passion and mission are relying on our bodies to come to fruition. I conducted a body healing ceremony with myself, whereas I thanked my entire body section by section for its contribution to my journey and then I apologised to each section of my body that had judged for so many years. This started my journey to healing my body, and ultimately transforming my body as well.”
“Giving love a chance again, as a 55-year-old woman getting married for the very first time, I want to inspire others to dismiss the notion that time is running out. No one has your unique journey but you, and no one else’s timeline to love should make you feel like it's too late I don’t feel like I’m late to anyone else’s love party at all, I feel like I’m right on time for my own party.”
As founder and chief executive officer of Motivating the Masses, Lisa has developed workshops and programmes aimed at transforming the lives and businesses.
She is also a best-selling author of six books, and her seventh book, “Abundance Now”, continues her journey, providing a clear and practical blueprint for personal success. It is the follow-up to Lisa’s New York Times best-seller “No Matter What”.
Lisa’s extraordinary story of transforming her own life from being on assistance to leading a multi-million-dollar enterprise is the inspiration behind her mission to teach others that success is possible.
She has appeared on Oprah, The Today Show, The Dr Phil Show, The Steve Harvey Show and Extra. She is also celebrated for the impact she has on the lives of teens. Through Lisa’s non-profit foundation Motivating the Teen Spirit, she has touched the lives of over 270,000 teens. Among the prestigious awards and honours she has received are the Humanitarian Award from South Africa, the Ambassador Award, and the LEGO Foundation ‘s Heart of Learning Award. The City of Henderson, Nevada, named November 20 as Motivating the Teen Spirit Day; the City of San Diego named April 25 Motivating the Masses Day, and the City of Houston, Texas, named May 9 as Lisa Nichols Day for her dedication to service, philanthropy and healing. While her corporate offices and business focus remain in the Greater San Diego area, Lisa now lives in Nassau.
“I have five intentions this year, several of which you already have heard: to develop a rhythm with my new husband and family that allows me to serve the world with no reservations or guilt; to explore the beautiful islands of the Bahamas that I now live in, and I mean explore – rom day trips to weekend trips to five-day staycations, I plan to soak it all in and drag my husband along with me. I want to maintain the consistency in health and fitness I’ve developed during the pandemic and leading up to my wedding. I will not be gaining those ‘new love’ pounds, no sir.
“My mother packed her bags, came to Nassau and purchased a home, so I will be spending more time with my mother as she settles into living in the Bahamas as well. My final intention is to discover new Bahamian business partners to build relationship with that would be a great fit for future business opportunities that serve this community. Thank you, Bahamas, for welcoming me with such open arms and warm hearts,” said Lisa.