We had the good fortune of connecting with Ashley Mozingo and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Ashley, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
I’ve never considered myself a business woman or creative until I was paid for someone wanting to have a conversation with me.

My mind is a vast place of numerous ideas. I feel like many businesses birth from something we want to see in the world. I consider myself an artist of many things, but my business is myself. I feel for many entrepreneurs, we are the business. Our businesses were birth because we wanted to see ourselves in the world and help those who have similar stories to us.

I am a Creative. I can paint. I can write stories. I can write songs. I develop concepts for other creatives. However, my most profitable and powerful creative medium, is my voice.

I started, AFKNFIRM (Afknfirm.com), because I started going through the most radical life shift I knew to be necessary. AFKNFIRM is a Wellness platform designed to grab the attention of those individuals who have a rugged approach to mental health healing and wellness. The brand encompasses reading materials, motivational statement attire and home goods & décor, and community outreach.

AFKNFIRM brings awareness to wellness through an unorthodox approach, with a more aggressive tone than commonly found in the wellness field.

I created this business because traditional meditation and mindfulness was not working for me. I saw a need for myself and found that many more people needed the same thing.

Being a Creative is vast. It’s interdimensional. There are upsets and success, but there is always growth.

One thing that I feel a successful Creative needs is patience.

You will need patience when it’s not ready yet, and patience when it doesn’t do it’s best.

You will need patience when your working your 9-5 until you no longer have to ask someone for time off work.

You will patience when you make the leap and you are resetting your feet.

You will need patience when you’re learning your craft and developing your best practices.

You will need patience when you have to start over.

You will need patience when it’s working in your favor.

You will need patience when your counting all your checks.

I pursed a creative career because my purpose depended on it.

My advice to any and every creative, whether you are just starting, well established, still thinking about it, or in the thick of it: You are worthy of audacious creativity. Do not question your gift or gifts. You do something your way, and you do it well. Be as bold, soft, fearless, tactful and as hungry as you want.

Seats at the table are for half-steppers. Build the kitchen, build the dining room, hire your chefs and BE the table. EatFKNgood. You have always belonged.

– Ashley Mozingo

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I have an intimate relationship with words. I love writing and speaking and sharing my thoughts with the world. I also love helping people conceptualize their ideas into words and business plans. I can make a mean proposal.

I understand that I have a gift of making things make sense and problem solving. When someone wants to have a conversation with my about their creative ideas, I am always honored. Ideas are also gifts. I never disrespect anyone’s gifts, even if I can’t always unwrap it.

When I’m invited to speak somewhere or to someone, it truly humbles me. I remember days when I was told I’m talking too much, or I’m being dramatic, or to sit down and be quiet. It morphed into me feeling like stillness was a punishment, and I shouldn’t share my thoughts and opinions.

As I started to open up and move in my essence, I felt empowered and motivated towards the direction of my creative path. Creative directing and motivational speaking were never things I imagined me doing, but here I am, directing and speaking.

I am my brand.
AFKNFIRM is my brand.

I want everyone to know how important it is to believe in your vitality.
You are truly your best thing.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Oh you coming to Charlotte?!

Now, let me tell you…Charlotte is Cinderella, everything is going to close about midnight, so we gotta get our fun in before then.

Which works for me because I’m sleepy by 10PM. (Just kidding, some places are open late.)

But let me tell you what we WILL get into:

What we eating?
Jinya | Ramen
Pho Hoa | Pho
MOA | Koran BBQ
Dogwood | Southern Table & Bar
What The Fries? | Duh
Ace of Spuds | Gourmet Baked Potatoes
LuLus | Seafood
Pieces | Sushi
Optimist Hall Food Hall (we hanging out here too)
BW Sweets
Jazzy Cheesecakes

Where we drinking?
Members Only
Charlotte Beer Garden

Where we going?
Optimist Hall
The Flying Pig
Mint Museum
Anywhere Harvey Cummings II is playing (Band)
The Corner
Coco and the Director
Hovis House –if you know bout it.
Two Scoops Creamery
Freedom Park

We are going to round off our week at Crowder Mountain, because who doesn’t like a good mountain view?

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There are a number of souls and readings that I contribute to the blooming of my story.

I will start with my sister and brother. Long before they knew how much they would motivate me, they were pushing me to be unwaveringly giving to those I love. They had no idea that they were showing me how to love, even when I did not know how to do so. I appreciate every moment of curiosity and boldness they presented me with. I love them immensely and always will.

My dad, aka my sense maker. My dad has always shown me how important it is to never back down from what is right, even when I’m being broken down. He is an incredible creative spirit, who constantly gives me encouragement on why it is important for me to always be my whole self. My mother, for showing me that I can stand up to whoever, and still be strong.

My tribe, Shay and Mariah. I would not know unconditional sisterhood and how love expands beyond romance had it not been for their commitment to loving me through my battles and their own. Being able to be vulnerable to and for others, is a sign of respect, and I honor these two beautiful and powerful women. I will support them in anything they do. Always.

My favorite readings and Podcast come from Sarah Jakes Roberts. Her readings, Don’t Settle for Safe: Embracing the Uncomfortable to Become Unstoppable and Woman Evolve, change my perspective on self value. Her method of delivering her teachings and messages really helps a wrench like me Amen? I am in the virtual congregation of ONE | A Potter’s House Church, hallayluuu.

And Last but never least, to the woman who not only holds my heart, but knows it, P.

P is the most incredible and wise woman I’ve ever known and her love and dedication to me has proven to me that pure love is truly unconditional. In our companionship, I have never questioned her compassion for me. I’m grateful for the position God orchestrated her soul to be in my life. My soul will find you, for every lifetime it exists.

Website: afknfirm.com

Instagram: @itsmozingo / @afknfirm

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ashley-mozingo-mba/

Twitter: @itsmozingo

Other: TikTok: @itsmozingo

Image Credits
P. Sheff Photo / Design Co.

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