Jalisa • Owner, Soulflower Experiences
Jalisa is the definition of #girlboss. The honorary native has lived in Denver for 18 years and couples her background as an educator with mindfulness instruction to create POC intentional yoga spaces. Yes, please! Keep reading to learn more about this multifaceted entrepreneur. I promise you’ll love her just as much as I do.
How long have you lived in Denver?
18 whole entire years, sheesh. Natives still won’t let me claim Colorado though. *side eye*
Tell me about your business.
I have two. My first business is Soulflower Experiences. It’s where I combine my background as an educator and a mindfulness instructor. While in grad school, my thesis focused on why people of color weren’t visible in yoga spaces. Once I graduated, I started hosting Black Girl Magic Yoga classes, which is a POC intentional space. I also teach Yoga After Dark.
In addition to teaching, I’m on the board of directors for the local non-profit, Building Bridges (BB), and from that, I launched a fundraiser called Flowetry: Poetry in Motion. The event combines POC spoken word artists and yogis to create words in motion. It’s such a vibe!
What does it mean to be you?
Honestly, I have been big on this mantra over the past year, “I am the Light.”. I feel like that is what I am at my core. Light and love and shit-talking, and I’m just now feeling confident to sit in that power. To be me means to walk alone often, to pioneer, to reclaim, and share knowledge. I feel like a lot of folks want to “get” me, but I’m just a reflection of them, so they already know what’s up.
What does it mean to you to be Black in Denver?
To me, to be Black in Denver means to be constantly discovering oneself. Finding out where you fit in between assimilation and ancestry while understanding who you are authentically. And it’s dope because we get the ability to choose where we want to fall.
Do you show up in life authentically? If so, what are the benefits of being one’s true self?
Now, absolutely. Back then, not so much. Being my true self benefits me because there isn’t a time in which I walk out of a space and question if people got me or a copy of me. We all have copies or masks that we wear for protection, depending on our environment. I’ve challenged myself to throw the mask to the side and just show up as Jalisa and see what happens. So far so good.
What do you love most about living in Denver?
My ability to drive to the mountains and hike to see things I’ve never seen before and come back down and hang at a chill spot downtown all in the same day.