Over the years, wellness has been given the image of an affluent skinny white woman in Lululemon walking to Starbucks and sipping her Venti matcha iced tea. True that is some people’s reality but not most fitness enthusiasts. Many people are afraid to approach wellness as it seems unattainable and out of their grasp. The average US minimum wage is $7.25 an hour, so how are most people expected to pay $30 for a Soul Cycle class. The bottom line, they won’t. Many stores are now getting in on the wellness trend as well and selling expensive yoga mats, crystals and CBD face masks. The social media portrayal of wellness has created a shiny image, put together, and always Insta-ready. All of this begs the question is it all necessary? Do we need expensive yoga clothes to feel more in tune with our practice, do we need Hemp infused face lotion claiming to reduce wrinkles. In reality, most of us are running on fumes trying to juggle work and family and still fit in a weekend self-care session. Wellness does not have to cost money. I repeat wellness can be free. Wellness can be taking a walk, watching the sunset, or reading a book. Whatever calms your mind and lets you create a moment of mindfulness is wellness.

I noticed there was a lack of African Americans in the wellness industry when I started my journey to become an Integrative Health and Wellness Coach. A random google search for popular health coaches only populates white health coaches. Only when you type in the word Black after popular then do you see African American health coaches. I thought, why are the Black coaches separated in a different category? Like so many industries now being scrutinized for inclusion, the wellness industry is being looked at as well. Many of the “popular” healing modalities, such as yoga, Ayurveda, and crystal healing began in countries full of black and brown individuals. During the current crisis, America is facing everyone is now highlighting Black-owned businesses which is amazing, let us hope this continues for years to come and is not a flash in the pan. Once the world starts to open back up let us continue to support Black-owned business and not forget how we got here. Some other ways to move the needle forward are to be intentional about where you spend your hard-earned money. Actively seek out black healthcare providers and wellness experts. When we seek out diverse spaces it shifts our perception of who should be in those positions. Learn to be uncomfortable discussing race. Only once the conversations start happening can we have honest and open talks.

For so long, people of color have been left out of the wellness narrative and it is time for a shift. A new generation of wellness practitioners is emerging and reclaiming the traditions of our ancestors.    

I am walking the talk and coaching through holistic methods to help my clients reclaim the life they are meant to have. I have coached many clients to transform their lives by acting as a supportive mentor and wellness advocate. I raise awareness and offer support as clients move toward the greater health and wellness goals; they establish for themselves. My program can be done in person or virtually depending on the client’s location. I believe in manifesting the life you want through positive thoughts, a clear path, and dedicated work.