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Life and Work with Coach Briana James

Today we’d like to introduce you to Coach Briana James.

So, before we jump into specific questions about what you do, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
As a child, my dream was to help children. I thought that being a doctor was the best way to achieve my dream, but once I entered college, I found that I did not have a love for becoming a doctor but found love in health. I had to fail and make mistakes to understand in what way my dream to help children would come true. While completing my associate’s degree I also found an interest in the business. When I transition back to a university, I finally realized that becoming a teacher is the best way to achieve my dream.

After having kids, becoming a teacher, and overcoming depression, I knew I needed to get my health back on track. I was never a skinny girl, my whole life I have been a bigger girl but I never let that be an excuse for achieving my fitness goals. I realized the ideal picture of a teacher is not what I looked like. This depressed me and I started looking for quick-fix ways to lose the weight from having kids. However, with my teaching schedule, I found it hard to stick with anything.

After again many failures and mistake, I found someone that had faith in me and shared my love for health. She helped me better understand the world of nutrition. I went on to lose 30 lbs, gained my energy back and motivation for life. The fact that a business was attached to reaching my health goal was a plus. My energized dream of helping expanded to wanted to help anyone that needed it.

I have since rediscovered my love for life. I have a passion for sharing my positive energy. I help others that struggle with creating healthy habits as I once did. I help mothers regain energy after a long day and still have energy to play with kids as I once struggled.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
My journey has had many ups and downs on the way. I would say my first setback was an unwanted sexual encounter. I spent many nights crying but I knew that I had to keep going to provide for my son. At the same time, I had to deal with mean people, bullies, and disbelief from others, which continues today. I know that I am the only one that controls my life.

My advice for other women is to have a vision and goal and don’t let anyone tell you no. Let the haters hate and keep proving them wrong. The hardest is dealing with the bullies, but maintain your positivity and stay away from those people. Keep yourself surrounded by like-minded and positive people. I believe that good things don’t come easy, you have to fight for what you want.

Please tell us about PVAngel Wellness.
As a teacher, I deal with the everyday struggles of teens and at the same time try to show them and motivate them to be physically active. Many teens struggle socially and emotionally. I try to be a positive adult in their life that sees a bright future for them.

As a wellness coach, I help busy women and men realize that their health goals can be accomplished. The most important thing for those that I help is accountability. Many need someone to help keep them on track, keep them motivated, and celebrate their wins no matter what. I work with some in person, but I do many challenges online.

What makes me proud is the ones that I help reach their goals. Especially moms and dads, who have the energy now to come home after work and spend quality time with their kids.

I’m known as the ‘happy coach’ as I keep a smile on my face and always give positive energy to others. I keep my life busy between my kids, teaching, coaching, traveling, the gym, and working on my doctorate. No matter what I make time for those that I help and show them being busy does not keep them from reaching their goals.

There’s a wealth of academic research that suggests that a lack of mentors and networking opportunities for women has materially affected the number of women in leadership roles. Smart organizations and industry leaders are working to change this, but in the meantime, do you have any advice for finding a mentor and building a network?
My advice in finding a mentor is to look up to someone who is on top in your industry. Find out their habits and somethings that made them successful. Networking has been very easy with social media. I use Facebook with different groups of mutual interest. I interact a lot with people that I have things in common with such as being a mom.

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Image Credit:
Pedro Ramos

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