By Mel Williams
I first learned about Affirmations For the GrownAss Woman by catching a clip snippet of No is Bae via Instagram. Intrigued, I listened to the entire album shortly thereafter and knew I had to interview the woman behind it all. I’d like to introduce you to Ms. Toni Jones, her story, and her thoughts on womanhood and how we can start to heal a generation of brokenness.
LFB: Where are you originally from? Please share a little background and any childhood stories that you might hold dear or maybe inspired you to help women or create music.
TJ: I am originally from Metro Detroit. To be honest it was the broken women that I grew up around in my community, my family, my church and schools (that inspires me). Once I got more life experience I realized I was on a path to be(ing) another broken woman that projected that brokenness onto others. I decided I did not want that for my life so I went on a quest to figure out how to heal and create a healed woman within myself.
LFB: What’s the story behind your latest project Affirmations For the GrownAss Woman? How did the idea start and can you share a bit about the process of bringing the vision to life?
TJ: The brainchild behind this album was based on a few things: 1. Creating something that was easily accessible (with) profit potential, 2. Creating a wellness tool that was on the go for women who believe they have limited time to tend to their internal world, 3. I wanted to innovate a new way of doing my business so I can create space for my love life and family, 4. I wanted to share my 7 years of healing work on myself with women all around the world to inspire their healing and wellness journey.
LFB: What’s your overall mission with this project and with Wife Your Life? What message do you want to impact more women with?
TJ: My goodness it feels so good to be so clear in my answer to this question. My overall mission with this project is for millions of women to heal and be well while they work and live everyday life. My mission with the WIFE your LIFE approach to wellness is to equip women to no longer compromise for their mindset health, emotional health, and spiritual well being for the grind. I want to achieve this by producing wellness events and experiences, and speaking to women all over the world. The message I want to impact more women with is that their thrive doesn’t require burning out and that they can have a healthier relationship between their work ethic and well being.
LFB: Who are some women and/or what are some instances (personal or not) that have shaped your philosophies on womanhood? What are some of your thoughts towards womanhood?
TJ: To be honest the character Claire Huxtable, and the woman who played her Phylicia Rashad, Beyonce Carter, Diana Ross, Byron Katie, and Tina Lawson. These women contributed to my curation of how I defined and created my own womanhood.
My thoughts about womanhood are centered around becoming aware of your truth, what you want, what is true for yourself and taking the courageous journey within (oneself) to discover, explore, understand, love, transform and master. I believe that the new era of women’s leadership and empowerment is being ushered by the sacred relationship with one’s holistic well-being.
LFB: I loved the entire album and my top favs were Yoni, The New I Do, and The Present Is Woman. I’d like to dive a little more into some of the songs. In F Boys Are Tools of Enlightenment you start off by addressing some of the common issues women face in relationships and call it a chorus among women. In your opinion, what’s the real issue here? Why is something that’s like a chorus among woman an issue that seems to just keep repeating itself over and over? What do you feel women are maybe missing?
TJ: Thank you so much for loving it! I am thrilled the album is landing for so many women. The real issue that I have identified is that we don’t have a K-12 education on who we are as spiritual beings living in a human body as a woman. That type of illiteracy perpetuates generational narratives that sabotage our thrive in many areas of our life that mean the most to us. Our love lives matter. They matter a lot. It’s one of the reasons why we are here “To Love and Be Loved.” But what is love? Who taught us that? I believe when we learn who we are as spiritual beings living in a human machine, as women we can navigate our complex existence in a healthier way because we have more insight on how we operate.
Essentially we are missing knowledge, enlightenment, and the stillness that is required for an awakening. More often than not pain is “our traveling professor” and we just need to enroll and learn the lessons so we are not repeating that painful class over and over again. WIFE Comma wellness is my attempt to educate and equip women with the tools and practices to go within to learn who they are as a spirit, as a human, as a woman and to care for all three. This is a WIFE your LIFE approach. When this approach is taken into consideration the attachment to judge men we chose loosens and we begin to see our experiences with men as classes so we can learn to choose healthier, to attract better, to love better. Issa Class!
LFB: Where do you draw your source of inspiration to help women?
TJ: Honestly, my default inspires me. My default is what my brain and senses witnessed and downloaded. I know what my mind is conditioned to do and be, and I don’t ever want that to have control over me. I can’t help what I didn’t get or wasn’t taught. What I can do is unlearn. What I can do is grow in my gratitude for the brokenness and flaws of my caregivers and community to inspire me to do and be better for myself, my future family, and community. Lastly, my vision of the woman I see in my mind has possessed me and she inspires me to take the necessary actions for her to be expressed in every area of my life.
LFB: What core advice would you offer to women to help them live their best lives today?
TJ: My core advice would be is to stay curiously active in discovery and living out your infinite potential. Learn, research, network, read, listen, communicate–whatever you have to do to explore what is possible for your evolution, do it. Be the active seeker so you can express your highest truth of who you are to be in this life.
To learn more about Affirmations for the GrownAss Woman with Toni Jones, the Wife Your Life initiative or the phenomenal woman behind it all Toni Jones please visit her social media and website below. Be sure to check out her latest project and share what you think!
IG: @wifecomma @ilovetonijones