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EXCLUSIVE: Former model and Beauty CEO Adaire Byerly Talks #BLM, Mental Health and Progress

#ChangingtheNarrative 

Before becoming the CEO and founder of Entertainment Mindframe, Adaire Byerly had already changed the narrative by coming the first African-American to be signed and represented, under 5’8 at the Dallas-based Clutts Agency.

The Fort Worth, TX native and licensed practitioner started Entertainment Mindframe on three things: her love/hate relationship with the industry, seeing the “intangible issues in the industry”, and her love for the science of the mind.

“Through my observation, I noticed that so many people only view these industries as a platform to showcase their talent and become famous, and simultaneously overlook the fact that these industries are actual businesses that effect our U.S. economy by billions of dollars,” she tells RoyalTee. “As a result, I created Entertainment Mindframe™, the first company to change operations of show business by cognitive sciences.”

Together she and her team are bridging the gap between industry mindset and perception. Byerly has worked with renowned fashion staples such as J.Bolin and numerous talent agencies, broadcast companies, and fashion agencies.

 

As a former model, do you feel we still a long way to go regarding diversity and prejudice?

I personally do not believe there is a long way to go and the reason why is because the fashion, entertainment, and media industries have so much control over programming societies perception of what is acceptable and what is not. These industries have always been known for pushing the mold and going against the grain, society always seems to follow. I would say there is not a long way to go, but lots of work to be done. Knowing the pull these industries have on our psyche, it won’t take long to implement change.

What are your thoughts on the protesting, Floyd, Breonna Taylor etc.? 

When it comes to protesting, my mind goes beyond marching within our cities, although society has labeled protesting as a negative act. The definition of protesting is a statement or action expressing disapproval or objection to something. That can be accomplished across many forms whether it is marching, petitions, company statements, changing who you do business with or how you do business, voting, getting involved in the community, spreading education and sharing your voice.

As humans, we are emotional creatures, and the unfortunate deaths listed have caused a visceral reaction from the public. Due to this, we have seen intense responses from the public and have been condemned or judge for it. Because I understand the science of emotion, I cannot blame or say that it is wrong. I just hope and pray that the protesting across the globe, in all forms is heard and change is not just made, but historically permanent.

Do you feel we would finally start to see the changes that we need?

I think it is a start to see changes. As an African American, I understand that these types of things have happened before, and not much has changed. However, this time the uproar is a bit different because it caused a ripple effect not just here in America, but around the world. Personally, I would like to see this continue by the conversation staying in the forefront until the long-term changes are made.

Mental health is still somewhat of a taboo topic in the Black community and it seems we need to pay attention to now more than ever. What would be your suggestion to open up that conversation with friends and family?

There is a brilliant theory by Dr. Joy DeGruy, called P.T.S.S. (Posttraumatic Slave Syndrome). It describes the multi-generational trauma that African Americans have experienced since slavery that leads to untreated and undiagnosed P.T.S.D. (Posttraumatic Stress Disorder) that is passed down through generations.

Her theory actually falls in line with the biological study, Epigenetics. Which is the study of the changes in organisms caused by modification of gene expression rather than alteration of the genetic code itself. This is directly related to your DNA, and what is or is not expressed.

What does all this mean? Well in simpler terms, this theory suggests that the trauma slaves endured possibly turned off partial expressions in our DNA, causing us to have certain reactions to the world around us. As far as mental health goes, majority of us were born from traumatized bodies (our ancestors), so in a sense, trauma, pain, confusion, and fear is almost a normality to African Americans. If it is normal, why fix it?

The biggest misconception of mental health is the idea that something outside of you must be wrong in order to justify what you may be experiencing. But as I answered in the previous question, we operate from the inside-out, from our cells to our behavior. One of the largest issues in the African American community is we subconsciously carry so much pain that we believe it is the norm. Having these conscious conversations with our loved ones can open the channel for awareness and the ultimate healing and change.

 

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