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

Hi Brittney, how has your work-life balance changed over time?
The most rewarding decision I have made regarding my work, was the decision to balance and navigate how I chose to spend my time. I used to rely on a schedule where I was constantly grinding. Though I found a lot of success, and accomplished many things, I began to notice other areas of my life could use improvement. I now take days, away from the grind, to simply slow down, allow myself to be still in time, and enjoy the process. This balance has improved my creativity and actually given me a better energy and outlook when I return to my grind.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
ABA Academy, provides comprehensive skills-based studios and support services to elementary, middle school, and high school inner-city students annually. The program takes place during school hours, after-school, weekends, during school breaks and the summer. Students strengthen and reinforce their core academic knowledge through applied-learning discovery projects that involves critical-thinking and skill development in sports, arts, and technology. As an organization, our primary objective is to lead inner-city students and families from a state of dependency, to self-sufficiency, and into a life of self-development. We give them the skills and tools they need to matriculate to college, enter a career and come back to build their community.

The most rewarding aspect, and what makes us most proud, is watching each student develop into the person they were always meant to become. It is evident that a student knowing they are believed in, supported, and valuable is the best tool and foundation you can create for a student, and watching them stand successful, on this foundation, brings us all absolute joy. This is what makes us successful!

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Monday- Shopping on Rodeo Drive Tuesday- Heels Night Class at The Playground w/Nicole Kirkland
Wednesday- Yoga with The YogiAthlete
Thursday- Dinner at Mastro’s
Friday- Lakers vs. Warriors game at Staples Center
Saturday- Bike Ride at the Santa Monica Pier
Sunday- Brunch at The Serving Spoon

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Through the journey of my business success, there is one person that has undoubtedly been my anchor, and that person is Stephanie Anderson. Stepping into the inner-workings of entrepreneurship, one will experience extreme highs and dreaded lows that take the weak out of the game. Needless to say, I’ve experienced both during these past 4 years, and one of the major reasons that I’m able to continue to push forward is due to Steph’s self-less support, encouragement, and steadfast leadership. In this industry, they say you’re only as strong as your weakest link, but what if that link is as strong as you? Steph is definitely that. She has given endless hours, unmatched sacrifices and invaluable contributions toward helping the business reach its full potential. Her passion for the job, and the community that we serve, is what makes her an incredible person to work with. However, I believe she has yet to realize the magnitude, positive impact and impression that she leaves on each student and family that we serve. When the families that we serve have graduated on to the next part of their journey, they continue to reach out to Coach Steph for those powerful words of encouragement or just to say hi. They know she’ll be there! That’s because it’s just Steph being Steph!

There aren’t many that are made like Steph, and I’m thankful and beyond blessed to have the opportunity to experience her rare form.

Website: www.abanation.com

Instagram: @aba_nation

Image Credits
Stephanie Anderson Ruth Viola

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