Women Who Run Shit: Radiah Rhodes, Dr. Roni Ellington and Tawana Bhagwat
It’s rare to find three poised, intellectual women of color working together to transform the way women leaders, corporate executives and entrepreneurs own their truth and show up in this world. It’s rarer still to find three women of color doing this life-changing work who also happen to be steeped in engineering and mathematics degrees with energy work and life coach expertise. There is no refuting that the creators of Evók Life by Design are all-around bad asses — and REAL women to boot.
Radiah Rhodes, Dr. Roni Ellington and Tawana Bhagwat are not your run-of-the-mill life coaches. In fact, Evók, a brand positioned for seven-figure earnings in 2018, is not a life coaching company at all. They consider Evók a strategic think tank, a center of excellence and a STEM company all in one. “Our genius lies in our ability to get at the core of elusive problems that women face every day to get real results,” said Rhodes, an engineer by trade. Rhodes and her partners, Ellington and Bhagwat, are on a mission to engineer the abstract concepts of science, spirituality and reality into the most potent and practical tools to help women live in alignment with the lives they desire. They believe transformation doesn’t have to be a risky, painful or lonely experience forced on women in times of crisis. Their work is serious business but it’s also playful. It’s intentional, it’s authentic, and they are blowing up the lies women tell themselves and setting the industry ablaze.
How’s the company transforming lives? We’ve got the answers below.
First, tell us a little about your background and what inspired you to create Evók Life by Design?
Rhodes: I’m a trained industrial engineer by degree and a lot of my work is in process design, process improvement and operational management. I spent 18 years at Procter & Gamble working on the Cover Girl brand. About halfway through my career, I reached a point where I had given and given, and I felt really trapped. I had two babies within 16 months and there was a lot going on at work and at home. I slipped into a depression and because I’m an engineer, the way I dealt with it was very analytical. At this very low point in my life, my father asked me the question, ‘Who are you?’ He would not give me any insight on how to answer the question. I just had to go think about it and what struck me was, I am life changing love. As an engineer my first thought was, where did that come from? [Laughter]
My initial answer to my father’s question was ethereal and upon examining the question further, I figured out that all of the things I thought were supposed to be true about getting a degree, getting a good job, having a family and being happy were not holding up to be true. All I knew about myself was that I loved really, really hard, I was very passionate and I threw myself into my work, my marriage, all of my relationships and responsibilities. So I went with, I am life changing love, as a defining statement and I started an excel spreadsheet to declare what I knew about my life. This became the start of our BEPrint™ process — a science-based process we created to uncover the default energy patterns women get stuck in. The BEPrint™ identifies each woman’s unique sources of energy and designs a new pattern that creates new outcomes.
Ellington: Picking up where Radiah left off, she created this spreadsheet as she so often does. [Laughter] Radiah said, ‘Roni, I think I’ve got something.’ I went to her house and I’ll never forget seeing how she built out her work. I am an associate professor of math education at the great Morgan State University and I coordinate for the university’s graduate programs. I am also a licensed science and mind practitioner at the Spiritual Empowerment Center and I have my own consulting practice where I lead talks around STEM education. I brought my curriculum development lens to what Radiah developed because you can’t just give women a spreadsheet and say, ‘Here you go.’ I sat with her and we started to co-create what we now call The BEPrint™.
You have a third business partner, Tawana, who has a brand new baby at home. Tell us about her background and what she brings to the business?
Rhodes: Tawana is a certified executive coach who spent 20 years as a Fortune 50 business strategy, operations and human resource management executive. She came to work at Cover Girl about three years ago as our human resources leader. It was funny because she was our HR manager who is a black woman named Tawana and she’s Muslim. I thought, How did she get this job? My whole impression of Procter & Gamble was that it was very corporate and a very challenging environment. Tawana is no nonsense and I thought she was amazing because I had been in this particular organization for 15 years by that time and I had never seen anyone like her within the company. I would see her and say, ‘When are you gonna come work with us?’ She would look at me and reply emphatically, ‘When you make me an offer.’ Eventually we got to a point where we could make her an offer and here we are. Tawana believes in the power of women and moves with and models authentic power at a level that black women need to see. She brings strategies that allow us to serve women at the highest level of who they can be and become.
What do you think women will gain when they go through the BEPrint™ process?
Rhodes: Freedom, release and power. Not empowerment, but the power to consciously choose the life they want for themselves with freedom and relief from fear. There’s something about our program that I love. In the sequence of the conversations and the unfolding that happens, there’s a dialing down of the fear. The first time you go through the BEPrint™ process you cry, but the more you go through it, it becomes super light. Women have spent so much time and energy investing in building ourselves, our credentials and our accomplishments so it’s a very scary, risky feeling to say, ‘I’m going to change myself and my life after I’ve spent all this time building this life.’ The way we’ve structured the program mitigates a lot of that risk for women and allows us to go really deep and see real changes at an accelerated pace.
Can you provide tips for women at home who want to begin their own transformational journey?
Rhodes: Be willing to embrace the truth that you are limitless. Open up to the idea that you are not who you think you are and there is a real tangible way of shifting your perspective about yourself.
Ellington: There are certain immutable laws of being and spirit. I would encourage women to understand that their lives are operating from these divine principles and they should get clear about what these principles are. There’s a greater force that’s operating that you should become aware of to really create what you want in the most profound and powerful way. Investigating these laws gives women ways to empower themselves to use these laws consciously.
Rhodes: Eliminate the fear of confronting your life and your truth. Our partner Tawana says, ‘We pack everything up in our own little treasure chest — all of our truths, our experiences and our hurts. We hold them and cling to them.’ Be willing to let it go. Free yourself from the burden and the fear of what you know to be the truth. Stop hiding it. Stop feeding it. Stop clinching it to your chest. Be willing to free yourself up.
Ellington: You made up what you are. You can make up something different. Truthfully, who you are and what you’ve got is all inside of a story you made up. If you don’t like the results of the story you’re living, you can literally take a piece of paper and a pencil, and rewrite the story. The only life you’re living is in the moment and as real as it feels, the only reason it’s real is because you invested a lot of energy in it. Disinvest your energy. Give yourself some space to make up a new story. As adults, we’re so serious but we have the space to make up something new. What we did yesterday is gone.
Rhodes: Practice being present. Be where you are and whenever you find yourself not being present, create a practice that keeps you grounded in the moment. The universe is trying to give us the gift of spirit but you actually have to be present to receive this gift. Everything is available to you in the moment.
Lead Image credit: ©C-Suite Pics- Radiah Rhodes (left), Dr. Roni Ellington (center), Tawana Bhagwat (right)
This article was originally published on The Tai Life: http://thetailife.com/women-who-run-shit-radiah-rhodes-dr-roni-ellington-and-tawana-bhagwat-founders-of-evok-life-by-design/