We had the good fortune of connecting with Shannalei Henry and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Shannalei, let’s talk legacy – what do you want yours to be?
This question is so complex yet so simple. I want my legacy to be one of hard work. The work done in my business (In Your Corner), the work done in different ministries for my church, and through the work I want to do in my community. I want my legacy to reflect the foundation of my life, which is, my belief in God and how I learned to wait in Him when it comes to all I pray for.I want to see lives transformed through the work He does through me in my business and other endeavors. That I constantly worked on my craft to aide more people. I want people to remember that I was able to smile through moments of stress and hardships even when I wanted to give up. That I was faithful and constantly leaned on God to see me through. That I learned to be still.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
In Your Corner is safe space for all things empowerment, healing, inspiration and education. I have always wanted to help guide individuals to their best selves and finally took the step of private practice in 2021. It all began in 2020 during COVID, around the time that I lost my grandmother. That was a time where I felt so lost and heartbroken and knowing that I had people on my side ready to lift me up when I was ready, meant the world to me. This birthed a drive to help people in a more intimate and direct approach. I just needed to take the next step which was to open my own practice where I could broaden my reach without limitations to the scope of my work and my investment of time.
I am most proud of the work that has already begun and everyone that’s supported me thus far! I come from a multifaceted background working everywhere from outpatient therapy to shelters and the school system with an array of clients from different ages, races and ethnicities. Working in Connecticut, New York and now Florida has made me well-versed and has allowed me to meet many people from different walks of life but ultimately with the same truth: all they want is to be seen and heard. They want to know that they have someone walking with them on their journey towards healing and it is beyond a pleasure for me to aide them in that. Knowing that clients truly feel and know that they have someone in their corner rooting for them and listening to them through all their seasons is one of my biggest motivators. Helping clients from high school age to mid thirties, struggling with similar themes of low self-esteem, adjusting to growing pains and changes, relationships, communication, depression, anxiety and trauma is a huge passion of mine. It brings me great joy seeings clients becoming their best selves and knowing that even in their most difficult moments, they are conquerers!
It definitely wasn’t and isn’t easy. I have always considered myself a therapist not a businesswoman. And now that I am combining the two, it is challenging me in so many different ways and is pushing me to do the same work that I expect from my clients to be honest.
One of the biggest themes is vulnerability. Allowing myself to be seen has been so hard for me during this journey but I am building muscle in that area. This is part of the lessons I’ve been learning along the way: Even though it is important to use wisdom in my line of business where everyone has their own ideas or taboos about therapy, it is more important for individuals to feel connected to the person they’re entrusting with the depths of who they are.
It is important for me to be secure and believe in myself while being real about who I am. It is okay to not be perfect! I want the world to know that I am a real person that understands your struggle in one way or another. Yes, I am a therapist but that doesn’t exempt me from doing the inner work myself. In Your Corner is a safe space to be the real you and for us to work together to be the best you.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
We’ll go to Lake Worth Beach to enjoy some fun in the sun and lounge a little. Honestly when it comes to food I really enjoy trying new restaurants and exploring. For lunch after the beach we’d go to Old Key Lime House and Dinner we’d go to Elisabetta’s Ristorante or La Cosinita Latina.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My support system is the best! They all deserve to be celebrated for helping me get to the position I am in. I dedicate all things to God first. After God, my amazing husband who supports me in everything and challenges me to be better. My grandmother, who although is no longer physically with me has left this amazing legacy of belief in God, strength and love and my mother who has continued that same legacy. My sister friend Maya who referred me and my friends who are more like family (John, Deanna and Bianca), who have both walked with me through the highs and lows of life. My church family (Destiny International Ministries) that have been an amazing spiritual support for me and an environment that has developed me in ways I can’t even explain. And all of my supports back home in Connecticut and New York.