We had the good fortune of connecting with Shawnti Refuge and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Shawnti, how does your business help the community?
Shawnti Refuge Journals helps the community by bringing mental health to the forefront, as it is not often talked about in the African American Community. I provide a safe space & outlet such as support groups, workshops, & guided journals for those who are looking for alternative ways to deal with their life’s issues that cause stress & anxiety

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I never planned on making a career in Mental Health until after my own mental health was threatened. It’s funny how we as humans don’t acknowledge or pay attention to mental health until it effects us or someone close to us.

Once I decided to take my mental health seriously, I hit the ground running; advocating for EVERYONE to take their mental health seriously. I learned that mental illness and mental health are to different things, so I decided to advocate for mental health to educate the world on the difference. I started with creating a series of guided journals to help people who were searching for healing with guided journals. I then expanded to public speaking, telling my own personal story of my mental health. I again expanded to becoming a Lifestyle Coach. A Lifestyle Coach is someone who partners with clients, helping them achieve their goals, overcome challenges, and make changes in their lives. They help clients identify their own strengths and use that power to create the changes they seek.

It wasn’t easy for me to get started because I was terrified at the thought of revealing my mental state to the world & being judged or not taken seriously because of it. Another aspect that made me getting into business not easy was because when I first started out, I was trying to be Super Woman and do everything from scratch, by myself.

Once I came to the realization that I wasn’t able to get the business set up on my own, I reached out for help, but to the wrong people. I was scammed out of thousands of dollars in the beginning, so I had to literally start all over from the beginning to get my business where it needs to be. Starting all over meant doing my research for the best Mentors & Coaches out there. I found them and they are my tribe!

I’m Journal Bae. I believe that you deserve to live your best life being free from emotional baggage by getting to the root of the issue, working through it, and healing naturally. I am most proud of my brand because I turned my pain into power. I didn’t play the victim of my situation. I’m a generational curse breaker and I can show you how to be one too!

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
My BFF and I are going to MoCity Sports Grill on Wednesday for the “wangs”, drinks, and overall great atmosphere. Any other day we’d go shopping at Katy Mills Mall. That’s great exercise for our bodies and our wallets!

We can’t miss the beach! We’ll go to Surfside beach and play in the sand and water! Since we discovered Surfside Beach, we don’t go to Galveston beaches anymore.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Kamilah Thomas, Tomika Young of Meek University, Robbi Reed, & Dr. Candace Walters have all contributed to my healing & business journey more than they know. I appreciate each and every one of these ladies for believing in me, cultivating me, encouraging me, and helping me when I needed it most.

Website: shawntirefugejournals.com

Instagram: instagram.com/shawntirefugejournals

Linkedin: linkedin.com/in/shawntirefuge

Twitter: twitter.com/@srefugejournals

Facebook: facebook.com/shawntirefugejournals

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCphZdqbNfPI0wwCgFX8IwRQ

Image Credits
Headshot: B2ful Photography Product shots: Shawnti Refuge

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