When a woman speaks her mind, advocating for impactful communication, and for making a difference in other women’s lives, I want to know more…
Meet Christelyn Karazin – black women’s advocate, author, and the creator of the best-selling online learning course, The Pink Pill. Christelyn created The Pink Pill to teach the proper etiquette needed to navigate in broader social circles and, “to include everything your mother didn’t have time to tell you because she was too busy struggling.”
I discovered Christelyn and her show, “How to Interracially Date and Marry Like Eve,” on her Youtube channel (56,700 followers!). Christelyn recommended my speech app, LikeSo: Your Personal Speech Coach, and suddenly visits to my website were spiking! (Thanks Christelyn!).
Here is our conversation:
Hi, Christelyn. It’s wonderful to speak with you, The Pink Pill Woman!
You’ve said that there are basically two types of people in the world. Those that passively let life just happen, and those who take charge of their destiny and take the necessary measures to execute them. You are most certainly in the latter category – you are a Pink Pill woman!
How did you get started on your mission to help women with self improvement? What made you create The Pink Pill?
It started when I got my book deal in 2010 for a book called Swirling: How to Date, Mate, and Relate Mixing Race, Culture, and Creed. The book is about interracial relationships from a black woman’s perspective. I myself wanted to be married and wanted to find the best man for the job. Suffice to say, it started a lot of important conversations and created a lot of controversy.
My book agent recommended that I start a blog. I called it, “Beyond Black and White.” I soon realized that although black women were open to dating interracially, they weren’t comfortable and wanted to know more about the cultural differences. I decided to create a course and called it The Pink Pill. A play on the Matrix. Not the Red Pill or the Blue Pill. But the Pink Pill – the truth about what black women need to do to feel more confident navigating and presenting themselves in a broader society. A course designed to bring awareness to cultural underpinnings and all the hidden rules. The course is not only for personal relationships, but also professional endeavors.
You say you caused a lot of controversy?
Yes. People asked, “Why are you trying to make us different?” “Why can’t I be how I am?” “Why are you trying to change me?”
Speaking articulately and professionally can be like learning another language. It doesn’t mean you can’t speak the way your peer group speaks, saying things like, “You feel me?” “Um hmm!” But you should also know the language used in the setting that you are navigating so you can get the best results. With that knowledge comes power and confidence. It;s better to know than to not know.
Yes, the way we speak is a very sensitive and culturally wrought topic. There are those that say, “Never mind, I’ll speak how i want to speak,” and those that say, “How can I speak better? What can I do to prepare myself for when I get that interview, speaking opportunity, sought-after date?!
Why do you think communication skills are key to both personal and professional success?
First impressions are important – first the way you look and second, what comes out of your mouth. People are going to make assumptions about you just by the first few phrases that come out of your mouth. They are going to judge your level of confidence.
Speaking properly in a great society gives you confidence. A lot of black women feel intimidated and they avoid events, opportunities, even dates that would give them the chance to be seen. It’s more of a hurdle for black women. A lot of black women will avoid opportunities to mix and mingle if they know they will be the only, or one of the only, black women.
From your perspective, what are the main issues with being a confident communicator? What are those speech hurdles to overcome?
The truth is, I had my learning curve too. A lot of us use improper words, filler words and may be guilty of mispronunciations.
When my now husband and I were dating in college, i had plans to go to a mixer event with the PRSSA and told him i would meet him afterward. He asked if i would be hungry? I told him no, they would have “ors devors” – totally mispronouncing hor d’oeuvres! It was embarrassing! But, I was grateful to him for correcting me. it takes someone who cares about you to correct you. I want to be that caring first stop. I want people to know.
Yes! Love that story. We all need to prepare for those low stakes, and high stakes situations!
Do you have any thoughts or ideas on what we can add to the LikeSo app that would help your Pink Pill audience?
I think adding common words that people mispronounce – the common faux pas (foe pa) would be great:-).
And along with filler words, the filler phrases that also get in the way. Like, “You feel me”? “You know what I am saying?”
And, how to introduce someone. Knowing how to do that makes you look boss.
All great ideas! I agree that being able to introduce someone is a great skill – showcases immediate confidence.
With our professional application, LIkeSo PRO, we have added the ability to customize the words and phrases that you want to avoid and words you want to reinforce.
How about over apologizing. Saying “Sorry” when there is nothing to be sorry for?
Actually, black women do not apologize too much. Black women are expected to be strong. That is not a weakness in the black community. But speaking too loudly and interrupting is a problem. It is a familial thing. In a lot of black families, they start talking over each other and get louder and louder.
Can you tell us what you mean by your tag line, “Strategies to live well to the extreme?”
“To the extreme” means beyond your wildest dreams. To live well, but magnify that. Think bigger.
What’s next for you?
I am excited to bring my training to young women. We just launched The Pink Pill for College. This is so important. I want to reach young women from out of the gate. I feel like a lot of black women are told to keep their heads down. To focus on studying and not socialized and date. And, not to get pregnant. But going to college is a great opportunity to build your social skills and to build a network of people that are different from you, perhaps from different cultures. To mingle with a purpose.
I was recently trained at the Beaumont School of Etiquette and Protocol. The truth is that we have a class system in the United States that we all need to know how to navigate. People always want to be better.