Nairobi, Kenya -- October 12, 2022 -- It's always a blast catching up with Nefretiri McGriff, Founder of Transcendent Living. A hilarious friend and perceptive empath, Nef warms all spaces she is in with indescribable fullness. We're fortunate to have her as a TablexTribe Community Ambassador and Blaze Business Intensive alumni. In this interview, Nefretiri shared some of her best business tips as she answered questions from Black female founders. We are extremely thrilled to have her as an ambassador and look forward to sharing more amazing content from her. Keep it locked!
Nefretiri McGriff is the owner of Transcendent Living. She describes herself as a trauma hawk in human form. As a therapist, Certified Trauma Professional, and Certified Life Coach, she supports women who are in dysfunctional mother-daughter relationships. Additionally, Nefretiri draws on her experience and expertise in other areas of trauma, more specifically in Domestic Violence, and brings about awareness of how trauma affects survivors of violence. She is a published author in the anthology, Sister 2 Sister and a guest appearing on TV One's Fatal Attraction series. As the owner of Transcendent Living, she is dedicated to providing a space for personal growth with a holistic approach because everyone deserves to live their life unapologetically.
"We help women and men create the narrative that they're wanting to create because really, the life that you want is waiting on you, you just have to create it. At Transcendent Living, I provide support to adult daughters who are in toxic relationships with their mothers. A lot of times when women avoid picking up calls from their moms or are just exhausted after a conversation with them, there is a deep-rooted issue there. My job is to help these women work through that," said Nefritiri
In this interview, Nefritiri provides her insights on some key business-related questions from Black women business owners across the globe.
First Question: Nefretiri, what inspired you to start your business?
Nefretiri: Oh, this is a good one. What inspired me to start my business was actually the clients that I had been seeing while I was working at another agency and had to leave. They kept saying to me "you know, you do so much great work in the field, you shouldn't stop just because you're going to another business that doesn't necessarily have this as a role for you." So I thought about it and I'm like, you know what, let me give this a try!
I started to really listen to different women who were in my situation and I kept hearing the same theme. If people are asking you a certain question or if they're constantly coming to you for advice or for your expertise, then there is a business in there for you. And so taking that concept and really starting to believe in myself, I thought, it's time for me to take this to the streets and make it do what it do! And that's how I ended up starting. That's what inspired me to start my business.
Next Question: Is it best to go back into the 9-to-5 job to make extra income for my business?
Nefretiri: This is literally something that I've had to contend with! So I will say it like this - when I started my business it was a side hustle. I was still up with my 9 to 5 because I chose to bootstrap. And if you've been following Casey, you probably already know what bootstrapping is, but to define it, it's where you're using your own money to start your business. And so that 9 to 5 job did help me because my business isn't necessarily one of those types of businesses that require that much capital, so I was able to do that and still have my benefits (i.e., health benefits) which were, and still are, very important to me.
There was a point in time when I decided to go full entrepreneur mode and then backtracked and went back to a 9-to-5 job. I had to allow myself to feel okay about doing that, because I started to feel a little bit like I gave up on myself too early. But the fact is that there are certain circumstances that will make you shift back to that and it's perfectly okay. Just make sure - as my mentor, Casey says - "Do not have an expensive hobby that you consider as your business! That's not what we're doing."
Third Question: What are some ways that I can find balance when I'm responsible for every single thing in my business?
Nefretiri: In my introduction, I talked about how I help women who are adults in toxic relationships with their mothers. Though I had to shift how I do things, my goal still remains the same. I had to change the business plan as my focus was initially on compassion fatigue. I still do compassion fatigue, but that is primarily with corporate agencies to make sure that they have healthy members of staff.
When you are responsible for every single thing in your company, that can lead to burnout, which will lead to compassion fatigue. So my advice will be to make sure you stay connected with Blaze because there are so many women in the community that you will be able to identify with who are going through these things. Make sure you sign up for the virtual summits and are constantly surrounding yourself with like-minded women. But also make sure that you are compassionate with yourself. See how you talk to yourself when there's something that's not going well and also if you are able to outsource certain business activities. Do that, because again - going back to what my mentor, Casey says - "If you're doing it all, you're doing it wrong!" I understand that a lot of us don't have the resources to outsource a lot, but try to find ways to creatively do that at cost while making sure that you take care of yourself. It all starts and ends with you - OK?
Final Question: I want to have close relationships with other black women business owners, but I fall off with keeping in touch. What would you recommend to make and keep relationships?
Nefretiri: I swear all this question is specifically for me! So since I started with Blaze, I've been able to connect with a fellow business owner, Nina Scott, who I call my business bestie. She's better known as Your Corner Coach and she's also hosted one of these Q + A sessions. We saw that we had a lot in common. We saw that our personal and professional goals just aligned. And so what we did is that we made an intentional effort to meet once a week and keep in communication. We made sure that.
Just like you, I had this same question a while ago. You're wanting to have a relationship with another woman who looks like you and does what you do, just in a different capacity. I asked for that and I got it. And I had to make sure that I was ready for that because I want to honor not just my time, but her time as well. Looking at that from a business standpoint, you have to make sure that you're showing up in your friendships in a similar way that you're showing up in your business. You always want to make sure that you are compassionate and empathetic and having open conversations with the woman that you're trying to build a bond with. Be sure to access that you're on similar paths and that there's some sort of compatibility. You also have to ensure that you will be available to keep the connection alive. But most importantly, make sure you are intentional! Show up for her how you want her to show up for you.
Nefretiri's Blaze Journey
I've been a member of the Blaze community since 2020 and it's been such an honor and privilege to be able to connect with different women from across the globe, not just the US. And I stay in touch because I found my business bestie through Blaze! I also make sure that I attend the Monday working sessions every now and then and when I tell you there are some dope vibes in there, believe me, there are. I'm also signed up for the newsletters and was a part of the Blaze Business Intensive course and still have access to go back and review the resources I received during the 6-week sessions, bringing back beautiful memories and helping me to stay on track in my business. I'm also able to reach out to the women that I made connections with during the course and we follow each other across social media. That good as well, because it's a reminder for me... like "hey, your sisters are out here, make sure you showing up for them."
Nefretiri is truly as special human. I'm really excited about the new work she is doing to help heal women that are experienced strained relationships with their mothers. Always inspired, always proud, always rooting.
Expanding your network of like-minded peers is a necessary part of the entrepreneurial journey. If you are a Black female entrepreneur, I invite you to download our iOS and Android app called TablexTribe. It is the first socio-business app for Black women, created for us by us. I'll see you inside! :)