We had the good fortune of connecting with Gloria Lucas and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Gloria, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
I always wanted to be a creator and own my own business. I never thought my struggle with an eating disorder would be the catalyst  to starting my own business. Once I gave myself permission to trust my own vision doors opened up for me. Never did I imagine I would receive the response I did. It has been an honor to connect with others from around the world that also struggle with eating disorders and have my work add value to their journeys. The community Nalgona Positivity Pride has formed has been inspiring and transformative.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally? Please tell us more about your work. We’d love to hear what sets you apart from others, what you are most proud of or excited about.
I started Nalgona Positivity Pride because I needed community. As a woman of color and daughter of immigrants, I never saw my story represented and I wanted to create a platform where communities of color could create non-conventional eating disorder support. Since starting Nalgona Positivity Pride, I have traveled all over the country as a public speaker covering the intersecting factors that contribute to the development of eating disorders and fatphobia. Besides selling merchandise we have an online peer support group. Nalgona Positivity Pride also helped found QTPOC and women of color market Mujeres Market. Currently I am part of a small team working on a book that will feature different stories of people of color that have experienced an eating disorder.

How did you get to where you are today professionally. Was it easy? If not, how did you overcome the challenges?
I had to share my painful eating disorder story with the public which is hard because eating disorders pressure individuals to isolate. I am not sure I always agree with the “professional aesthetic” because it aligns with a set of values that was created to ‘other’ marginalized people. For me, it is more important to keep showing up and present myself authentically.

What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way. What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story?
A lot of women of color are non-cookie cutter entrepreneurs that are creating innovative new industries that serve us and our communities. We need to trust ourselves and not be afraid of our visions. We have our own non-conventional ways of doing things and that is fine. I would also say that each step you take, take others with you. Avoid transactional relationships and focus on building community. Don’t betray yourself in the process. Prioritize health and recognize that being a starved activist/artist serves no one. At times it gets overwhelming but slow down and take care of yourself.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I want to give credit to the folks of my hometown in the Inland Empire who supported me and helped me start Nalgona Positivity Pride. I also want to credit my family and my friends who continuously show up for me.

Website: https://www.nalgonapositivitypride.com/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/nalgonapositivitypride/

Image Credits

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