Today, the self-love and self-care message is heavily appealing but quite often we notice that the “make you feel good” affirmations and “tell me what I want to hear” sessions aren’t necessarily practical when it comes to experiencing inner healing from past traumas, guilt, and shame. Sometimes doing the dirty work such as forgiving people from your past, reconciliation, therapy, a commitment to personal growth aka the ‘hard work’ is what it really takes to break free from one’s shackles.
Candice Jones Founder of Everything She Is Co, a community-driven platform helping young girls and women navigate their self-discovery story embodies this message. She gives us a glimpse into her story: “I was raised by a mother who sacrificed everything she was to herself to be everything she needed to be for her family. Running through my veins was strength: the cornerstone of black womanhood but even then, I knew nothing of how the journey from girl to woman would test me. With every instance of trauma, I layered on another layer of armor and by the time I graduated college I had so much built up, I could barely recognize myself. I wanted to release but no matter how many bubble baths I took, how many positive quotes I posted to Instagram, I hated who my past told me I was.”
Candice having been through these cycles has taken it upon herself to ensure the next generation of women don’t have to live every day burdened by their trauma and past. Prior to this, Jones was a full-time content creator that focused on helping Black young girls and women style and maintains their natural hair. She recounts “I personally went natural back in college when I no longer had my mom to perm it, so instead I transitioned and documented my progress along the way. This led to me having my own community across social media platforms such as YouTube and Instagram where many relied on me to share my best tips and tricks for curls, coils and kinks”. At the time her audience relied on her for tips and tricks on dealing with natural hair during this time. However, As she told her subscribers her story of feeling lost and uncertain of the future, they also shared their same concerns. She then realized that she was not the only one going through the motions of life feeling lost and unworthy.
Harnessing The Power Of Vulnerability
By Candice harnessing the power of vulnerability and sharing her story, she has given other women the freedom to do so and obtain healing through it. And this shows how vulnerability could be the avenue to healing for some.
Through sharing your story, you connect with others who have gone through similar pain and thereby you realize you are not alone as well as give yourself a shoulder of people to lean on for encouragement, support, and sometimes professional help. A therapist could be watching your videos or someone who has been through a similar experience and has the tools to navigate it while staying sane. You just never know the beauty that could come from being courageous and opening up. It helps women take back control of their lives and that is what Candice is doing with Everything She Is Co. It is the manifestation of her taking back control of her life. Jones wants all women, specifically women of color, to know they are not alone and give them resources to overcome their negative thoughts. Practicing self-love is more than just wine and bubbles baths, so she’s built a community for women to show up as they are to get the hard, cringe-worthy inner work done.
What They Don’t Tell You About Being Your Own Boss
It’s important to also dote on Candice’s success as a black female entrepreneur. She recounts this journey has certainly not been easy but has come with its own fair of challenges: “With my initial launch of Everything She Is Co. amid Covid-19, I faced many hurdles. I was new into the business world and had nothing but passion in my heart. Unfortunately, passion doesn’t guarantee anything, especially funding. That initial investment into Everything She Is Co. was a huge sacrifice but I take pride in self-funding my business, and I believe that the right funding opportunity is sure to come. The right opportunity will share the same values as I do, empowering women by helping them prioritize themselves.”
Candice also shares what a normal day of getting would look like “As a full-time content creator and entrepreneur that prioritizes rest and wellness, a day in my life looks like a balance between both of those realities. I dedicate mornings to holistic wellness by stretching, having a well-balanced breakfast, working out, and staying off of social media. From there, I begin to check emails, set my to-do list, and delegate tasks to assist my team in completing deadlines. Once my workday is over, I typically don’t respond to anything work-related until the next day. For me personally, it’s essential to set boundaries with myself so I don’t experience burnout.”
Nonetheless, the success for Candice keeps coming. She says: “The company has grown tremendously within its first year. With over 1000 Self-Love Workbooks sold, and opportunities to share my story across social media platforms and publications like Bauce Magazine, I am reminded of how much I’ve accomplished in such a short time frame. Everything She Is Co. started as me in my room trying to find ways to navigate my healing journey and now I have an entire functioning team that supports other girls and women along their journey into womanhood.”
Furthermore, it is worth noting how Candice was able to leverage the power of her already existing community on YouTube when building Everything She Is Co. When it comes to marketing tactics, Candice says “For me, the first step in marketing my business was learning more about who I was marketing to. I’ve spent a lot of time and effort learning my target audience, how they speak, what they are interested in, where I can find them, etc. And now I have someone in my team who is dedicated to keeping this research up to date. Currently, we use this information to influence how we post on social media, the copy we use for our ads or on our website etc. This has been a crucial foundational piece to my marketing plan and has definitely paid off. Also, utilizing public relations strategies to get my brand’s story read by the masses has been a great tactic. Public relations efforts allow your audience to get a behind-the-scenes look at your business and connect deeper to your company’s values.”
Achieving Balance Between Work And Wellness
You might be wondering how this wellness BAUCE still manages to juggle running a successful business as well as find time for her health and wellness. She states “Being a business owner is demanding, and if I’m not super intentional about prioritizing self-care, it quickly gets overshadowed by my work. My years as an entrepreneur have taught me that when I look at self-care as something non-negotiable as opposed to a “treat” to myself, I get it done much more consistently. Ever since I made that mindset shift, things like stretching, meditating, regular massages etc. are built into my daily, weekly, and monthly schedules. When you make your self-care routine a non-negotiable in your life, you can run your business efficiently and maintain a healthy sense of well-being.”
Final Words To The Aspiring BAUCE
For the Black woman who aspires to be a BAUCE both in her business and personal life, Candice affirms: “My words of advice would be: you don’t have to have all the answers but you do have to believe in yourself. When I initially started Everything She Is Co., I dealt with a lot of imposter syndrome. I questioned why I even thought I could take on something like this but because I’d done the work on myself, I had tools to combat these thoughts. I’d answer my doubt with positive affirmations and get back to building my dream. To be a Bauce, you have to find a way to push forward at any obstacle, even if what’s standing in the way is yourself.”