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

Hi Elena, what’s the most difficult decision you’ve ever had to make?
The most difficult decision I’ve ever had to make was to choose God, myself, my health and my future above all else. We as humans constantly face challenges in the society today. Are we adequate enough? Do we make our family proud? Is my body shape fair enough for you? Financial pressures – social media pressures and let’s be frankly honest, the list can go on forever. In my younger 20’s I remember being so very confident and sure of who I was, wanted to be and aspired to be. However, as my journey throughout my 20’s continued I began to carry on with me projections of others. These were projections of what counselors, family and church members, friends, co workers , etc expected. In time as I ended my 20’s I realized I had adopted a lifestyle of not living up to MY exceptions and God’s expectations and I had to make some changes.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I, like many, have faced challenges in arriving where I am today. I take the challenges and utilize them for opportunities of growth and education as much as I possibly can . When things get tough, I run to God like a baby. Overall, I’ve learned to just relax, breathe and let God lead. But most of all realizing that it truly takes a village and you do need a team to survive. I grew up an only child, adopting a behavior of pure self independence. However, in recent times I was humbled and shown that I need need a team and that all the small pieces create the most beautiful picture ever.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
If my best friend was visiting, which she does very often we’d certainly go to the city of Atlanta, eat at Joe’s on Juniper, attend some type of church service and find a hiking trail before the weekend is over.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
As I review my journey, I can think of many that deserve some recognition for assisting me in becoming who I am today. I have experienced a multitude of beautiful opportunities from graduating from an international charter school on the Dean’s List, leading an assembly line building internet racks for Google, to becoming a supervisor at a fast paced veterinary hospital to now being an Ordained Minister with a conscientious spiritual clothing line. There is a village of people and variables that have helped to mold, inspire, push, elevate and redirect me. Firstly, God. All glory, honor and praises to the Most High because He continues to show and provide things for me that my eyes nor ears could have ever imagined. My mother Elaine deserves much credit. She is my pure backbone on earth and I thank her for introducing to me an eagerness to never be stagnant. My Grandmother – Barbara for showing me that God is all I ever need and teaching me to always be good to the person in the mirror, which is myself. My Aunt Kim, Cousins Jasmine and Mike and Uncle Scott for the continued love, lack of judgement and support. My extended family, Brooke B., Marco N., Maria J., Chanel R., Sam M., and a few other souls that have joined me on this creative and artistic journey. Lastly, reading, studying and meditating on the scripture of the Bible, listening and attending Joyce Meyers conferences, joining and facilitating a Discipleship Classes at church and simply giving up time for God has truthfully helped me to arrive where I am today.

Website: www.apparelundergod.com , www.atltails.com
Instagram: @favored___ , @uga.and.co , @atl_tails
Facebook: Elena Anais

Image Credits
Under God Apparel & Company ATl Tails Pet Resort Lotusgraphy Arc & Pose

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