Interview by Lauren Ash
I'm big on therapy. Like, I think we all need to be seeing someone if nothing else but to get an outside, useful perspective on how to grow as a human being, how to be more loving to ourselves and those around us, and to process the highs and lows that life presents us. So, when I discovered Minaa B. this past year, I was overjoyed because I really appreciate learning about, and supporting, more women of color therapists! Minaa B. is a psychotherapist, to be specific, and she supports those living with depression, anxiety, and stress related issues. Minaa contributed to Om with a vulnerable piece about her own journey with mental health, and also was a guest in our recent #BGIOMindful Twitter Chat on Combating the Winter Blues. Be inspired by Minaa and her personal self-care rituals below and be sure to connect with her online. Follow her on Instagram @minaa_b and Twitter @minaab.
Who is Minaa B.?
She is a 27-year-old Afro-Latina. Author. Writer. Christian. Lover of good food. Introvert. Shy spirit. Overcomer, and warrior at heart.
What does Black Girl In Om mean to you?
Black Girl In Om means affirmation that my blackness matters in all spaces. It matters in the gym, in the work place, in the supermarket, or even walking down the street. It makes me feel seen, heard, and valued through every phase of my journey.
How do you identify with Black Girl In Om's mission?
I used to be that girl who searched outwardly for healing, safety and acceptance. It took a long time for me to realize that I have the power within to love myself wholly without having to depend on others to tell me that I was beautiful or worth loving. But this didn’t happen over night, it took hard work. It took years of therapy, de-cluttering, saying no and shifting the size of my inner circle. I can identify with Black Girl In Om’s mission because it focuses on the heart. It focuses on inward transformation, which results in behavioral modification as well as the renewal of the mind. I am constantly reminding myself that who I am on the outside is a reflection of who I am on the inside.
What's one ritual you recommend more women of color adopt to cultivate inner beauty and wellness?
We need to adopt the power of redefinition. Women need to understand that we are the ones who define who we are. Stop letting culture and society dictate whom you are supposed to be, how you are supposed to look and what it is that you are supposed to be doing. Beauty and wellness is subjective and we need to stop forcing some of our values and opinions on to folks who see life through a different lens than us. Redefine the norm. Do what it is that makes you happy and forget about the rest!
What's one wellness product you can't live without?
African-Shea Butter is my best friend. I rub that joint all over my face and body to help with my dark scaring. And shout out to the homies on the corner of Bedstuy Brooklyn selling it for $5 a tub. Ha!
Minaa B. is licensed psychotherapist, writer, and author of the book, Rivers Are Coming. She practices in NYC and works with a population of people struggling with depression, anxiety and other stress related issues including those who are in search of transitioning their health and wellness. She is also the founder of an all-natural apothecary line Sunday Mornings and she shares quotes and affirming notes on her Instagram platform at @minaa_b. Learn more about booking a session with her and discover her work at www.minaab.com.