We had the good fortune of connecting with James Woods and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi James, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
My first thought was wow I could actually do this. I worked in mental health for years and was used to work with a lot of African American youth and families, and found myself of value to my colleagues and supervisors in general. Once I connected my work to value in the market place as in people need my skills and abilities to solve their problems i started to believe that me starting a business was viable. Previously I just thought that the only way I could do what I loved do which is serving people through mental health and wellness was through a job. But for me a job “aint” freedom, I didnt like the game I needed to play and the person I needed to be to survive at a job so I quit. Value, freedom, and quitting came first, then a business. It was more than just value in the market place, freedom from the 9-5 hours and quitting a system that didnt work for me, it was valuing myself, quitting self-doubt and establishing a system that did work for me. Those are all still apart of my journey as i define them all over and over again every day, but i am here now and know I deserve to be and want to be.
As I was going through my transition to business owner the thoughts were more reactionary in the beginning. “like wow, I am really doing this”. Reacting to a lot of fear from uncertainty and braving new waters. A lot of scrambled thoughts and actions just to get some sense of direction and income. The mental shift from employee to business owner was and is “no joke”. Its a whole new mindset and I was struggling with letting go of the old to make necessary room for the new, survival mode. I stayed in long enough to get a sense of self within the new landscape that in the beginning only looked like a far away land.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
My career is the ascension of mind, body, and spirit, through the release of my true self. Sounds woo woo, but I was just talking to my dad about it how I am not the same son he raised in many ways but in more ways I am. Feel Free 2 Feel Free is my mantra because I want to help others experience the freedom of life through the practices i have experienced. I have seen students and staff transform into new versions of themselves through our programming and I love it.
My journey to get to this point has been lots of questions, lessons and empathy, which is my greatest gift and superpower. Helping educators to develop their own strategies for self care creates a ripple effect that spreads through schools, students and communities and I have been fortunate enough to become a small pebble in that process.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Mike Brown @theartoflettingpodcast Byron young @ www.doingitwell.com