I’m starting a series featuring positive, driven, and fierce women of color. I hope you can gain some insight on a variety of topics, perspectives, inspiration, and insight about yourself with this series. We’ll kick The Life and Times of… series off with Jamilah Shabazz.
How would you describe the Life and Times of Jamilah Shabazz?
I would describe the Life and Times of Jamilah Shabazz as a woman that saw beauty in the midst of a storm and embarked on a journey to self-discovery, self love, and peace and is now committed and passionate about helping others do the same.
What’s your day job and what’s your passion?
I’m a health care professional with Blue Cross Blue Shield. I’m passionate about encouraging women on their journey to healing, self love, wholeness and freedom.
What is your why?
Something I live by is be who you needed when you were younger. When I was younger, I yearned for someone to instill the importance of self love in me and to show me what loving yourself looked like. Because I lacked that guidance growing up, I found myself lost and going down a path of destruction,by persistently allowing others to determine my worth. My why would be to prevent others from heading down a path of destruction and to heal those that have a desire to reorient their live’s from paths of destruction.
How did you begin your self-love journey?
I had a moment of honesty and transparency with myself. As I reflected on my past decisions, I asked myself is this who you want to be or do you want to become the woman of value that God created you to be. Do you want to continue to see yourself through the eyes of other people or do you want to see yourself through the eyes of God and I chose the latter. After that moment of reflection, I made the decision to persistently build myself up while asking God to strip me of anything that would interfere with my self-discovery process and he did from friendships, to relationships, to desires, to self limiting beliefs. It hurt but it was a beautiful process that I wouldn’t change for anything in the world.
How do you care for yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally?
All of these intertwine for me. I care for myself physically by exercising whether it is a high intensity exercise program or just a 15 minute walk in nature, getting my body moving boosts endorphins and provides me with peace and clarity. I eat a balanced diet with quality food. I give my body the best because it deserves the best. I care for myself mentally by being gentle and kind with myself especially with my thoughts. Your mind will believe whatever you tell it to so Im committed to refraining from finishing any negative statements about myself. Im devoted to feeding my mind truth, love, and faith. I never beat myself up. I look at everything as an experience that I will learn and grow from. I focus on loving and accepting who I am right now and knowing that I can make changes at any given time. Emotionally, I guard my heart and mind. I create an atmosphere of peace and persistently pursue it. I don’t play about my peace. I listen to my needs and I respond to them. If I need a break, I take a break to meditate for a few minutes or even longer to replenish my spirit. I spend time doing things that I love that give me a sense of fulfillment. I surround myself with very positive people. I set boundaries for the people in my life and make adjustments when needed. There are people that I love that aren’t positive that I cannot eliminate but I set an allotted time that I can spend with them to protect my peace.
Can you tell us how you became an STD Awareness Advocate? (Click here to read her blog post)
I became a STD Awareness advocate because I contracted a sexually transmitted disease when I lost my virginity and I suffered in silence for many years. After years of battling low self esteem and depression, I decided to free myself and once I freed myself I vowed to help others. I believe that every trial we go through and grow through should be used to help free someone else.
What do you want to tell women about our sexual health?
It is so important. Make your sexual health a top priority in your life by protecting and educating yourself. Thoroughly understand and walk yourself through the consequences of not protecting and educating yourself. Then adjust your behavior and your surroundings to have the most positive outcome. I won’t tell you how to live but I will say as the love you have for yourself intensifies, the easier it’ll be for you to master the area of excellent sexual health.
How do you live intentionally?
I live intentionally by keeping my purpose in mind during everything that I do and understanding that the reason for my existence is bigger than me.
What's your inspiration?
The idea of a world full of people that are committed to healing, loving themselves and freeing themselves to improve their quality of life. Healing, self love, and freedom inspires me because once you experience it, everything changes. You realize that your possibilities in life are endless.
What do you want your legacy to be?
I want my legacy to be a woman of value, excellence, and commitment that ignited a movement of healing, self love, and freedom for generations of people worldwide.
What is your why? How do you plan to live more intentionally?