There are so many women who suffer in silence wresting with inner struggles that they hope no one would discover. They constantly convince themselves that they are “doing just fine” while wearing their own personal and customized superwoman masks.
Women, especially women of color, carry tremendous burdens and loads alone because we are expected to always exude strength and fortitude and the façade of “never let them see you sweat.” This not only induces stress, anxiety, depression and distress which can manifest itself into certain illnesses. It also causes our visions and dreams to slowly erode.
Crystal Cunningham, CEO and visionary of Crystal Clear Communications became a catalyst to the millennial through the baby boomer to help women (and men) stop the inner erosion by removing the residue of their past and present lives. The anthology, “No More Residue” is a power-filled and timely compilation of 17 authors who through bravery and resilience share their respective stories. We recently caught up with Crystal to talk about the project:
What was your role as the visionary for the project? Talk a little about the process—especially being something totally new for you.
My role was to help, empower, and coach the co-authors to achieve part of their dream. As my inaugural anthology, I had to make sure things were well planned and this caused me to approach the assignment as if I were in a leadership position back in corporate America, managing several people at one time.
With 20 years of experience working at a Fortune 500 company, I combined my talents, skill sets, soft and hard skills along with my spiritual gifts and created a blueprint for others to follow. I heavily relied on the Holy Spirit to lead me first as I led others. I always started with prayer along and encouraged group fasting so that we could maintain focus while having maximum impact.
I provided a guide that mapped out a step-by-step blueprint on how we could achieve their own personal goals as well the collective goal. Most importantly, it was necessary to create and foster a safe environment for each of them to open up about their story.
What is the purpose of the book project, “No More Residue”?
The purpose of “No More Residue” is to connect the co-authors back to a genuine relationship to God. Help free them from past failed decisions that have been formed against their identity, confidence, and belief system. It was time to start owning their calling and God-given assignment. The book release provided the visibility to get their message and mission out into the marketplace. To turn their pain into profits through multiple streams of income through writing, speaking, and online course creation.
Amid a global pandemic, recent election, systemic racism and social injustices…, why do you feel like the time was NOW to release this project?
This could not be a better time to release No More Residue. When the world is going through so much pain and hurt due to negative past situations that many people have experienced. Not just in their homes amongst families but strangers because of their identity. What the pandemic and the presidential election it exposed the residue of how many truly feel to the light. When we are sick the doctor must run a test to find out where the problem is coming from. A lot of times you can not see things with the natural eye you have to use special equipment to see what’s hiding behind the walls or the lining of the person’s organs. No More Residue is not just a book, a tool that I use to bring forth the thing that could potentially kill you silently.
What is the overarching message that you want your reader to come away with?
God is totally aware of your past and present mistakes including failed decisions. However, your identity is not wrapped up in what you did but who God says you are. There is a distinct difference in those realities.
It’s time to release the shameful secrets so you can be free to love yourself and create the life that you truly desire. You are not alone that’s why others share their stories so you will know that someone understands what your mind and heart is saying. Forgive yourself, rinse yourself off thoroughly and know that you are loved.
Share a little about the group of authors/co-authors – how would you quick summarize their contributions to the project?
Each of them provided a great contribution to the project. In order to bring this book to the masses, I knew I needed their honesty, authenticity, and transparency. By me creating a space of confidentiality, it birthed a sisterhood within the group that they never had. Many of them now connect even outside of the group supporting one another in various endeavors. It was important to allow their suggestions and recommendations to be not just heard, but implemented throughout the process. I’m so proud of them.
What are a few excerpts from the authors as they found transformation in releasing their story for perhaps the first time?
It was actually a freeing experience in that I finally realized that I was no longer bound to that part of my life’s story. Now I can share it boldly without the self-inflicted condemnation and fear.
It was liberating to be able to get my story out. Courage is arising from within me as I “own” my experience knowing that I am now free from the inhibitions that I had before I opened up about it.
I was able to get it out and off my chest. Especially now that I know other women was/is going through the same thing and they can identify what it is. For me, there are no more chains and those strongholds are broken.
Crystal, please share some life lessons that the reader will walk away from.
- Your past does not define who you are—try again.
- Success comes from failure and taking repeated action; therefore, learn to enjoy them both.
- Be okay with the process and watch you change in the journey.
- Do not despise the small steps because they still can get you where you desire to go.
- Change your thoughts and words to align with your heart’s desires.
How could one connect with the movement and order the book if interested?
Featured Image by KIMAZING Photography