Wife-to-Derek and Coach-to-Wives, Lakia “LB” Brandenburg is The Wife Coach. She is a two-time author who is committed to helping women (who are married or planning to be) know the difference between being a “married” woman and being a dynamic wife.
Raised in the suburban-area of Hyattsville, Maryland, her first example of marriage was in an unhealthy, unhappy relationship with her now divorced parents. When it came to love in a marriage, it had nothing to do with her father both physically and mentally abusing her mother. This experience left a lasting impression that marriage was everything but a fairytale.
But Lakia’s perception of love and marriage changed when she discovered that marriage is what you create it to be. She met the man that would later become her real-life prince charming and discovered that she had the power to write her own love story. Lakia’s message is that your story can be Picture Perfect too.
Who is Lakia Brandenburg and what was your motivation for starting your brand?
Lakia Brandenburg is wife to Derrick and coach to wives. I wear so many hats, but I’m a lover of life. I love healthy successful relationships and that was what started my brand. It started with me experiencing premarital education just to prepare for my role as a wife and my husband to prepare for his role as a husband. We came together and created this thing called “A Picture Perfect Marriage” that’s based on a whole lot of imperfections. That’s what got me excited about sharing this journey of marriage. To show people that we are not perfect at all, but we truly do enjoy our relationship and our marriage and you can have it too. That’s my role as a wife coach.
As The Wife Coach, I prepare, educate, and empower women both before and after they get married. I think many times we get into marriage without being fully prepared. Jumping into marriage unprepared is just as wise as jumping into a pool without knowing how to swim. My goal is to give you all of the different strokes to show you all of the ways to stay afloat in marriage by helping you to understand who you are as you show up in this marriage. As a wife coach, I always focus on the woman. I focus on her happiness because at the end of the day, you made the selection of whom you said you are going to marry and said, “I do” to the proposal. But now, how are you going to maintain your own happiness? How is he going to complement that happiness? How are you going to communicate with your husband? I teach you how to tame your tongue and create a deeper more intimate relationship and that all starts with you. He has a role in it, but there’s only one person in a relationship that you can control, and that is you.
What are some of the main challenges you faced with building your brand?
The first challenge is knowing where to start. How am I going to get people to take me seriously as a wife coach? Building a recognizable, trusting presence is challenging. They want to know how you know what you’re talking about. You have to build that trust. I’ve been consistent for the past four years just showing up as LB. The same person you get on a Monday is the same person you’re going to get on a Wednesday. Another challenge is growing financially, getting people to see the value in what you do. I feel like everything starts at the core of your relationship and if you don’t have that intact, you won’t be successful. If you can see the value in seeing a successful relationship then you know why a wife coach is so valuable to your actual being. I think it’s always a challenge making sure people see the value in what you’re doing. I think patience is a challenge because we sometimes see on Instagram that people are becoming overnight success stories while you’re trying to grow your brand brick by brick. Then you see someone get thirty bricks at one time and you’re sitting there with your one brick at a time not realizing that that’s the process of building and trusting God. He really is helping you to become the person that you said you desired to be. He’s giving you the desires of your heart, but you don’t want to take the road that he paved out for you. That road is going to teach you things, prepare you for obstacles, ups, downs, and so many different things that you will encounter on your journey.
How did you discover your purpose?
Discovering your purpose is a part of the journey. There was a moment where I got in tune and I got quiet and I wanted God to download my “purpose” – my reason for being here. As I was being quiet and allowing God to talk to me, I created my book. I created a vision board and I was able to see things clearly. I wanted to share my story of how my husband and I came together and created “Our Picture Perfect Marriage” and I thought that was my purpose. Next thing you know, out of that birthed the wife coaching company, the publishing company, my speaking engagements, all of these TV, radio, podcast appearances. Things don’t have to be perfect in order to have what it is you consider a perfect life. It’s kind of hard to define purpose as one thing. I feel it is something you are constantly living out.
Tell us about your transition from teacher to entrepreneur.
I had to get very clear on what I wanted to do. I was a classroom teacher for five years. I couldn’t see myself working 25- 30 years with the children being so disrespectful. It was a crazy situation and I said there has to be more to life than this. I got very clear on what it is I’d like to do. The first thing you have to do is quiet your mind and spirit. I was preparing myself for this transition. Here’s an acronym that I came up with during that time:
Q- Quiet your mind and your spirit
U- Understand your purpose and understand what God gifted you with
I- Initiate your plan. I knew I was going to teach or go full-time in my publishing company
T- Take action. The goal is for you to take action on your plan
Most of the times people are in a relationship when they are doing this, but you have to go to your spouse with a plan and you need them to buy into it. Also, change your mindset. When I knew I was leaving the teaching profession, my mindset changed. Everything shifted because I knew now that I had my husband backing me up and I knew I had a plan in place in order for me to leave.
Tell us about your multiple brands and how all of those things came together for you.
It started with the book. I was coaching without realizing it through my story and my journey of how I had to go through a self-discovery moment in my 20s to figure out who I was, what I was bringing to the table, and what I was getting out of life. That brand started with my book. I birthed my publishing company out of that, “Perfectly Imperfect Publishing”. The only reason I birthed my publishing company is that I needed someone to publish my book and I simply wanted to have total control over my creative outlet so I created my own publishing company. All of those things take balance. I have to first define what balance looks like. It looks different from week to week. It is important to know that while you’re on this journey you have to solicit help. For some reason, we feel like the “S” on our chest is superwoman when it should be “I need support woman”. I need help. Beyoncé has the same 24 hours that we do, but she also has a lot of help. I think it was important for me to ask for help. My mother moved from Maryland to Atlanta and so I put that support system in place in order for me to be able to do all of the different things that I do. Every day doesn’t look the same and that’s the beauty of balance. It’s really a myth. It’s creating a form of harmony in all of the things that I do.
What motivates you to keep going?
I think it’s the excitement of seeing how far I’ve come. I’ve learned to embrace the journey. If I look back at who I was 5 years ago, I love who I have become in that journey of self-discovery. God was showing me to trust him and trust the process. Bringing people in my life, removing people from my life, and me being able to have the opportunity to talk to you has motivated me to keep going. I’ve come too far to give up. I may think about it, but it’s a part of the journey. That’s why you have to trust the journey because it’s all a part of God’s plan.
Name a few of your accomplishments and tell us which one you are most proud of.
I think I am most proud of me actually sitting down in June 2010 saying that I was going to write a book and six months later the book was done and six months after that, I was having my book release party. That was one of my biggest accomplishments because I did something that seemed so hard and actually went through the process of publishing it. If I hadn’t done that, I wouldn’t be having this interview. I wouldn’t have been the wife coach. All of these different things started from my book. The second is having the ability to create the relationship I have with my husband. I grew up in a household where marriage was toxic and for me to be able to create a peaceful house is an accomplishment. My husband could walk in this house right now and I’d just smile because I’m genuinely happy. We have a good thing going. It’s not perfect, but I’m proud of that. I am proud of the little women that are running around my house right now that I am raising. They are seeing their mother and father as an example of what real love looks like and an example of dreamers because my husband is a full-time entrepreneur also. They’re seeing us step out on faith and take chances every day. I want them to say, “My mother set out to do this and she did it, that means I can do it too”.
What advice would you give to women following in your footsteps?
Truly trust the process. You’re going to start off on this journey either not knowing or knowing a lot. You’re going to question a lot and I promise you God will align you with who you’re supposed to be aligned with. A lot of times you are unlearning in order to learn how to be a better wife and a better friend. The process is preparing you for the promise. You have to keep your eye on the promise, but trust the journey.
What can we see from LB in the future?
You’re definitely going to see LB being more of the go-to when it comes to creating successful happy relationships. I want my face to come to mind when you think of what would LB do? Or what would LB tell me to do? I want to become the presence for women and men because it is a possible thing. In the next couple of years, you will see me speaking internationally at marriage and relationship conferences. I may even be putting on my own conferences. I want to host staycations and workshops to continue to grow and be of service to women who just don’t know how to be a wife so they need to be educated.
You can learn more about and connect with Lakia “LB” Brandenburg at lakiabrandenburg.com.