Nobody owes you anything. If you want an opportunity sometimes you have to create the opportunity for yourself. I wanted to have a morning show. Did someone give me the opportunity yet? No, so I created my own morning show on my social media platforms. Have a great following and I am getting the message to the masses.
As a part of our series about women who are shaking things up in their industry, I had the pleasure of interviewing Tray Kearney.
Tray Kearney is an Author, Speaker, Certified Life/Relationship Coach and a servant leader whose assignment is helping others heal from matters of the heart. She is known for her method of helping others heal through her transparency and truth. Her testimony of going through the storm of infidelity on both sides of not only being the offender, but also the recipient of betrayal, gives men and women the safe haven they need to be transparent and honest with themselves without judgement.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we dig in, our readers would like to get to know you a bit more. Can you tell us a bit about your “backstory?” What led you to this particular career path?
I didn’t choose coaching, coaching chose me. Most of us get to our purpose through our tragedies of life and/or our traumas. I am no different from many. During a time in my life when I felt completely lost and distraught, I was trying to figure out who I was and where I was going in life. I was in a toxic and very dysfunctional relationship mainly because I was toxic and dysfunctional. A very good friend of mine who knew I was in a bad space introduced me to a prayer line called “Girlfriends Pray,” and on that call the founder Dr. Dee C. Marshall spoke about a group program called Life Camp. Life Camp is for women who desire a better life and who were looking for spiritual growth and personal development. I joined the program kicking and screaming and that’s where the journey began. To make a long story short, as I grew and became healthy mentally and spiritually I started to share my story of how I went from being a toxic, dysfunctional adulterer to being a healthy human being, women began to ask me how. Some even asked me to coach them. As the demand grew I decided to get certified and that is how I got here.
Can you tell our readers what it is about the work you’re doing that’s disruptive?
Well, my niche is a little different than most coaches. You can say I am the infidelity coach. Some have called me the #NoSideChicking Queen. I deal with the big pink elephant in the room that no one wants to address. I remove men from the equation and hold women accountable for their part in infidelity. Whether it is the wife who stays with a cheater for whatever reason or the side chick who some may call the mistress is sleeping with someone’s significant other. I take away the excuses and ask them some real questions. Not to blame them, but to hold them accountable. Blame causes guilt, accountability causes growth. I have programs to help women reclaim their self-worth and honor their own value, which leads them to healthy lifestyles. I have a movement I started called #NoSideChicking where I challenge women to honor, guard and respect each other’s relationships. I refuse to be silent about this. We will not stick our heads in the sand any longer or allow our fate to be in the hands of men. I share this on many platforms as a speaker, which is a career that I didn’t choose but that has chosen me. It’s funny I didn’t choose to be an author either. Some things are just part of your destiny, and again, as a disruptor I speak about the big pink elephant in the room, CHEATING. I say what a lot of women want to say but only think.
Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?
One of the funniest mistakes I made, hmmm this one is kind of hard because the topic is so heavy there aren’t too many funny stories. I had one of my first speaking engagements and I totally did not prepare for it. I thought speaking was speaking. I was just going to talk. The crowd was not at all engaged or impressed with me. I was mortified to say the least, but I got through it. Thinking about it now it was really funny. But at the time not so much. I learned that you must always be prepared. As a matter of fact, from that experience I am always over prepared.
We all need a little help along the journey. Who have been some of your mentors? Can you share a story about how they made an impact?
I always have to start with my Coach Dr. Dee C. Marshall; her program literally saved my life. She does an annual women’s retreat in PA she calls it the Mountain Top Experience. I went to the retreat and she did an exercise and challenged us to describe the 2020 version of ourselves which seemed crazy at the time because it was 2016, but the things we talked about on the mountain are my life right now. I am a 2x author, a certified life/relationship coach, and a sought- after speaker; back then it was just words on a piece of paper. Even though she would never take credit I am a better person because of her influence. I would also have to say my CORE. I have four friends of forty years who are more than friends they are mentors and have influenced me to be greater. Whether it was writing my book, getting my certifications, or speaking, I know I needed to continue to elevate to keep up with them. Nobody wants to be left behind. I’ve watched them get Master’s degrees in their forties, become heads of their departments, relocate, buy homes, have healthy happy marriages and so much more. They have mentored me not only through talks but through actions.
In today’s parlance, being disruptive is usually a positive adjective. But is disrupting always good? When do we say the converse, that a system or structure has ‘withstood the test of time’? Can you articulate to our readers when disrupting an industry is positive, and when disrupting an industry is ‘not so positive’? Can you share some examples of what you mean?
It’s all in your motive. If you are disruptive for a positive change then it is “Good Trouble.” If you are being disruptive to be destructive at the cost of someone else that is not good. If being disruptive compromises your integrity to prove a point that is not being disruptive, its being destructive; there’s a big difference between the two. I’ll say it again, what’s the “motive” of the disruption? When you use the word disruptive is it for the greater good of a cause or the people? I am disrupting the coaching industry to eliminate the infidelity epidemic. A friend of mine is disrupting the PR industry by teaching a DIYPR Program to help those who can’t afford PR that is positive disruption or good trouble.
Can you share 3 of the best words of advice you’ve gotten along your journey? Please give a story or example for each.
- Nobody owes you anything. If you want an opportunity sometimes you have to create the opportunity for yourself. I wanted to have a morning show. Did someone give me the opportunity yet? No, so I created my own morning show on my social media platforms. Have a great following and I am getting the message to the masses.
- When you learn, teach and when you get, give. I’ve learned from all of the experiences in my life and have learned to use it as content and context for my programs to teach those who need guidance in those areas that I’ve learned in. Being able to work from home and create my own schedule has given me extra time to do things I enjoy. When I’m not working I give my time to one of my favorite non-profits, Nassan’s Place, which is a 501c3 organization that supports families affected by autism.
- Everybody does not deserve a front row seat in your life. I have learned to prioritize people the way they prioritize me. If I am in the balcony of their life I honor their request by placing them in the balcony of mine. I used to give people a seat they wouldn’t give me. I used to hold on to people who had let me go, now I simply accept their choice and I let them go. It’s all a matter of protecting one’s peace.
We are sure you aren’t done. How are you going to shake things up next?
For the month of March I am launching the #NoSideChicking pledge where I hope to get one million women by the end of 2021 to take the #NoSideChicking pledge to honor, guard and respect each other’s relationship. I want them to agree to become part of the infidelity solution instead of the problem. We will pledge to not disrupt each other’s relationships and homes. We will pledge that we will not knowingly entertain someone else’s significant other.
In your opinion, what are the biggest challenges faced by ‘women disruptors’ that aren’t typically faced by their male counterparts?
Basically, just getting passed the judgement. When we disrupt and “think outside the box” we are called trouble makers instead of trail blazers. I think that is the major challenge we face. However, we have never been afraid of a challenge.
Do you have a book/podcast/talk that’s had a deep impact on your thinking? Can you share a story with us?
A book that has had a great impact on my life truly is the Bible. I’ve been down some slippery slopes and some dark alleys on my journey and I often tell myself “You’ve had the best map in front of you the whole time. All you had to do was follow the ten commandments and you would have avoided so much.” However, I wouldn’t trade my life lessons for the world.
You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂
The #NoSideChicking Movement. The antidote for infidelity.
Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote?” Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
“This too shall pass.” It’s relevant every day. No matter how hard it gets. No matter what I’ve gone through and no matter what I go through. I can honestly tell myself Tray “This too shall pass.”
How can our readers follow you online?
www.traykearney.com Instagram/Twitter @TrayKearney
This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for joining us!
Female Disruptors: Tray Kearney On The Three Things You Need To Shake Up Your Industry was originally published in Authority Magazine on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.