Prentis Smith; a man of faith, father and wellness influencer, living in Pasadena, California, U.S.A.

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-What does self-care mean to you? Being able to have and practice self awareness. There are many sides to it, I focus a lot on the mental health side of it rather than the get your nails and hair done or happy hour aspects. For instance if a person is struggling with finances or lives in an underprivileged area, they may need some coping skills to deal with everyday stressors.

-How did you get into self care? I worked in mental health for the past 2 years, doing group therapy as a substance abuse counselor, 60 day program dealing with addiction, depression, and anxiety, and I saw a pattern and theme throughout the interventions over the course of the past 2 years which was that negative self talk, shame and guilt kept coming up. That struck my nerve and I was like hmm I deal with this stuff too, and found myself growing professionally and personally by working in this environment and once I was helping others identify these issues I was able to identify these things in myself.

-What struggles are there in maintaining self-care? I think just the guilt that comes with it, because it takes humility to be able to admit there is a problem, not only to tell someone else but to tell yourself in the mirror. And when you don’t know that you have a problem, you don’t know that you don’t know. And then you have to have the ability to actually do something about the issue when you do realize it.

-How do you share self-care with others? Through different aspects of the self. I have Best Version a lifestyle brand, it focuses on faith, fitness and wellness. Humility falls under Faith that things will be okay although I can’t see past my nose. Wellness is about the energy you attract and the managing environments you are in. Fitness is being active, whether it’s physically, mentally or spiritually. Being able to sustain stamina throughout the day, not just going to gym.