Many know her as the first lady of change and those that have heard her story are inspired by the runaway bride who ditched riches to find her purpose.
Pandora Mabai was only 28 years old when she called off her wedding to a multi-millionaire in 2009. Two months before her wedding, she took a road less travelled and left the mansion she was residing in and became homeless in a bid for self-discovery.
“What I had with my ex-fiancé was not what I really wanted from marriage and I took a bold step to walk away. Walking away meant losing everything I had, the house, cars and money. I was willing to take the journey into the unknown to set myself free,” she said.
Mabai who resides at Kikuyu Waterfall Estate in Midrand experienced the deeper meaning of the saying ‘when days are dark friends are few’ as the only person who came to her aid was a hairdresser she barely knew. “She took me in to stay with her at the commune she was renting. I slept on the floor for a while but that was exactly what I needed. I had to hit rock bottom to discover who I am.”
A short while after being taken in by the hairdresser, Mabai decided to leave Johannesburg and go back home to Cape Town. “It was not long after being home that I received a call inviting me to share my experience at an event in Johannesburg. I had reconnected with the higher power above and built a relationship with God. I was not even a public speaker at that time. That was my breakthrough, I started envisioning myself on global stages inspiring many.”
To date, she has travelled to many countries around the world as an inspirational speaker, a career that has earned her the first lady of change title.
She has been to Zambia, Botswana, Ghana, Hong Kong and Dubai to mention but a few. However, her highlight was Zambia and Botswana. “The way they received me in those countries as a foreigner was different from how we South Africans treat foreigners which is sad because we are all Africans. I have never seen anything like that. The treatment was amazing. I would do Africa any day and anytime.”
She currently gets booked for public speaking and also works as a personal life coach. “I get booked and paid to speak around the world just like I had envisioned. I also do marketing and events management consultation for corporate companies. I am exactly where I wanted to be.”
Mabai is also starting a foundation to assist needy people, especially children. She delivers daily inspirational messages globally in the morning through social media platforms.
“I would like to advise women to be in a relationship purely for love. When love is the foundation, you can both work together to become anything you want to be.”
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