What Makes A Black Woman Leader Resilient?

What helps you to recover after setbacks, especially with the compounded traumas experienced even before the pandemic?

Coach Donna Marie Johnson
5 min readSep 23, 2022


Image of Beautiful Black Women by Clarke Sanders

My life could be described as an s-show over the past 4.5 years since my partner became fully disabled. Everything changed… financially, physically, geographically, and, of course, mentally and emotionally. Becoming a single mom while still living with my partner was mind-boggling… and still is. I know I am not the only married woman who has had to parent alone because their partner was unwilling or unable to partner with them adequately (or at all), so I am not writing all of this to complain, but I am sharing to ensure that I am being authentic and transparent.

Can you relate to any of this for yourself? Or Do you know a black woman leader who has had similar chaotic or traumatizing circumstances?

Despite it all, I am still standing. I did not lose my mind (will share on how I dodged this bullet later). I am still parenting solo, though my kids are older teens and young adults now. I am actually full of joy, despite the ongoing challenges we have been facing.

But how did I get here, to this place of joy, even in the midst of ongoing chaos?

The main key to keeping and increasing my joy is a simple daily habit that I formed during my teen years which has stuck with me throughout my life. This habit is daily morning devotionals. As a mom, this time became even more important for me because I needed to be up and awake and plugging in with my spirit before the pitter-patter of little feet began to rule my days. I will not discuss how much time I spend on these devotionals, because that’s something that’s very unique for each person. The relevant content and high quality of those devotionals are what is most important. (Also, I guess I need to define what joy looks like for me… will do that later, too.)

What Are Morning Devotionals?

As a youth being discipled by ministers within churches, bible studies, and summer camps, I was always told that it is important to get up early and read the Bible and pray each morning. I took that seriously and began to do…



Coach Donna Marie Johnson

Podcast Host and Life Coach. Overcoming trauma as a black woman leader pursuing lofty goals. I support you to plant your seeds of transformation so you can too.