My passion is to help women reconnect with their sensuality

Believe it or not, Lebo Grand is a force to be reckoned with and a sensuality revolutionary in his own right. Some people call him the modern day Oscar Wilde. I consider him as one of the most remarkable thought leaders of our time. I took a drive of approximately 35 minutes from Joburg to a pretty trendy dining establishment situated in the suburbs of Brooklyn, Pretoria, South Africa, where I was scheduled to meet with him. Great place indeed, I have to say. I had the rump steak. Tender and juicy—absolutely delicious—and a glass of sparkling wine, Boschendal Le Grand Pavillon Brut Rosé. The atmosphere was absolutely gorgeous. I definitely must go back when next I'm in town.

Lebo regards himself as a women's sensuality catalyst. His mission is all about helping women rediscover and reconnect with their sensual truth. Fact is, a lot of women are increasingly out of balance and out of touch with themselves and, consequently, with men. He recalls one woman saying to him, "I have absolutely no idea how to be a woman anymore. I feel totally unfeminine. I've been single for six years, have two kids, and I'm terrified of dating as I have no idea how to behave. I would love to have a partner but I feel so unattractive, unsexy and undesirable." 

 

Helping women rediscover and reconnect with their sensual side is something Lebo is very passionate about. Even if you have never ever been taught anything about what it means to be a sensual woman, something a lot of women seem to have in common, and are keen on starting a journey of reclaiming your own sensuality, Lebo is the man who is well capable of advancing your course in the most meaningful and exciting way. He specializes in empowering women to reclaim their sensuality and cultivate a 'desire creating behavior' that is essential to making them feel not only lit up on a daily basis but also enchanting to their significant other.

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Grand is not just a personal brand; it's WHO I AM

Grand is the highest expression of myself

As the lifestyle industry changes, so are its big-time players. Speaking of which, Lebo Grand is a name you should know, especially if you are an inherently feminine woman who has a desire to live an enchanting life. The man behind the name is a force to be reckoned with and a lifestyle personality in his own right. He is inherently and predominantly the Sigma male. He is also an author, musician, women’s desirability catalyst and sensual lifestyle connoisseur.

Lebo is a pretty good reflection of what a modern aesthete looks like; obsessed with music, art, beauty, food and pillow talks. I took a drive of approximately 35 minutes from Joburg to a pretty trendy dining establishment situated in the suburbs of Brooklyn, Pretoria, South Africa, where I was scheduled to meet with him. Great place indeed, I have to say. I had the rump steak. Tender and juicy – absolutely delicious – and a glass of sparkling wine, Boschendal Le Grand Pavillon Brut Rosé. The atmosphere was absolutely gorgeous. I definitely must go back when next I’m in town.

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Mr Grand, as his acquaintances call him, has broken through the stereotypes of 'Africanness' and has created his own path and is marching to the beat of his own drum. I asked him if 'Grand' was his actual surname and he started narrating a very emotional and courageous story I never anticipated.  This is how our conversation went. Lebo: There is a story that I grew up believing about myself, and that story was perpetuated by the negative effects of growing up with a last name such as Lekgema. The story that I grew up with was that I was doomed to failure and misery for the rest of my life.

To be totally honest with you, I secretly resent(ed) my family name. That's how deep this sh*t goes. During my school days, kids used to make fun of me because they perceived my last name as weird. This really affected me at a very deep and subconscious level. I found myself trying as best as I could to hide my face even in class because I did not want to be seen. But it was hard to hide myself because every now and then teachers would call out my name for one reason or the other. I always felt anxious and embarrassed. I even suffered from  sporadic  depression. I lost all of my self-esteem.

 

As a result of this trauma, I gradually became withdrawn and a loner. Happiness was such an elusive thing to me then. I was closed off to people for a long time and had trouble just being myself. I was always on the edge. I even avoided doing sports at school or anything that would put me in the public eye. I was a smart kid but I chose to act dumb because I didn't want to risk being under any kind of a spotlight no matter how big or small. Hearing the sound of my last name would, literally, shut my entire nervous system down. Sirens would go off in my head and I would suddenly feel panic attacks.

 

Just so you know, sharing this is actually part of my therapy. I admit: my family name has by far been my biggest insecurity and torture in life. It has always felt like a venom to my soul. What's even more interesting is how one of the greatest prides of being African lies in one fully owning their family name. Sadly, that has never been my pride. 

I was bullied and teased a lot through elementary school on account of my family name, which was considered as out of the ordinary. I still got scars on my mind when I think about it. But 'Grand' gave me an opportunity to heal from those past wounds. It's certainly not about me trying to be fancyalthough you have to admit it sounds pretty dandy. This reinvention was inspired, processed and propelled from the deepest recesses of my soul. It is the result of GIVING IN TO MYSELF. I finally had the audacity to be great. To free myself from things that used to hold me down and also from the fear of social ridicule. I gave myself the permission to be who I felt I needed to be in order to fulfill what I believe to be my true purpose here on earth. I'm also a firm believer in the notion that your name carries your destiny.

I've met people who thought they were showing me the ultimate respect by calling me Mr. Lekgema, but deep down I would wish they knew how uncomfortable that made me feel. It evoked so many traumatic memories from my childhood in my consciousness. Many of my peers have also somehow misunderstood me, they've always thought that I was ashamed of my African identity; others thought I was trying to westernize myself. Truth of the matter is: I've been ashamed for such a long time, but not of my Africanness, but of a culture that is not sensitive to the fragile condition of the human soul. 

When I turned sixteen I decided to change my story, it was not serving me, so why keep it? I missed out on too many opportunities because my old story kept me from advancing. My family name was not only the biggest insecurity of my life but it was also the ultimate terror that kept my soul caged. I was terrified of the world because of it. It was like a bully that took an oath that I would never get to realize my true potential. Somehow I subconsciously knew that unless I did something out of the ordinary, I would forever be doomed or stuck in the same spot. So I came to the conclusion that the old version of myself had to go. Grand was a choice I had to make to change my old story.

 

Consequently, the story I've been writing since has been nothing other than ah-mazing. I'm so in love with the new version of myself. It is filled with so much joy, passion and purpose. Moreover, being Lebo Grand has allowed me to experience the success I'm absolutely sure I would have never tasted if I was still pandering to my old story. Truth be told, I had to die to any form of me that was not serving me, and thereafter I had to birth a new, courageous and empowered version of me.

CALL ME MR. GRAND

I was sixteen when I decided to make a switch to Grand, this overtime became a self-fulfilling prophesy and a full embodiment of who I believe I was born to be. There is no doubt in my mind that Grand was divinely inspired. Deep down in my gut I've always known that my destiny is attached to it. Moreover, it has somehow brought out the best in me. It has made me to start living my life fully rather than just existing as I used to before. Borrowing from the words of Oprah Winfrey, Grand has allowed me to be able to "live out the truest, highest expression of myself." However. I still had to fight for this new person that I have become.

Kaci Diane, author of This heart of mine, said, “I love the person I’ve become, because I fought to become her.” I so deeply resonate with that statement because it reminds me of my own journey and all the mean and nasty things that I had to overcome in order to get here. Today I can boldly say to the world: "This is who I am! If you don't like it, tough!" I don't need anybody's validation or permission to claim this spot. If you think I'm going to wait for you to show up at my doorstep and say, "Finally, you are good enough to be called Lebo Grand." You better think again! I hold the paintbrush in my own hand. Live with it!

Poem for a goddess by Lebo Grand

 

I'm contemplating with discernment

Paying attention to the notion of

sensuality

Of what a perfect seductress you are

Your scent has infiltrated my soul

Igniting passion in a world where

dreams of ecstasy come to live

You are a dream that has finally

become my reality