Erasing mental health stigmas via digital content — Q & A with Donté Colley
Donté Colley is a Toronto-based digital content creator seeking expression via fashion and digital media. He aims to connect and empower global communities through authentic joy, movement, and a message of self-love.
Read on for words of motivation and inspiration from Donté Colley.
GoDaddy Q&A with digital content creator Donté Colley
GoDaddy: Tell us a bit about your business.
Donté Colley: With hopes of erasing the stigma surrounding mental health, I aim to empower others to understand and recognize the challenges associated with mental illness to enhance their mental wellbeing and overall wellness.
GoDaddy: What inspired you to start your business?
DC: I continue to use social media as a creative outlet and a way to make others and myself smile. The internet is such a powerful tool to connect with others.
The online world didn’t always serve a positive purpose for me. I found myself putting up a facade of who I was, which led me to believe that the real me wasn’t good enough, or people wouldn’t appreciate all the parts of who I am. The turning point for me was when I lost my sister to suicide in my last semester of high school.
Instead of trying to fit into a box that didn’t serve me any purpose, I learned to understand and appreciate that I had a purpose all along before someone had an opinion.
What other people thought of me was none of my business. These platforms led me to find those who share similar passions and use love as a catalyst for change. That continues to encourage me to do the same and spread a little more light on the internet.
GoDaddy: How does your business reflect who you are as an individual?
DC: My business is everything that I am. Transparent. Candid. Optimistic. Determined. I’ve had many people on this journey tell me that you can’t do what you love, and I am here to prove them wrong.
GoDaddy: How are you making a different future?
DC: We’re all a part of the puzzle, and all I could hope for is to encourage others to put in their piece because we are all so unique, valid and unreplicable.
GoDaddy: What’s it like to be an entrepreneur?
DC: It isn’t easy, but what comes easy is not worth having. The challenges that I’ve faced so far have been critical in the development of my brand and identity.
It comes in waves, and it is important to allow ourselves to flow through the roadblocks. The turbulence is temporary. The most rewarding thing about being an entrepreneur is the results of the energy and effort you exert into what you love. What you exert is what you will receive, and I’ll always stand by that.
GoDaddy: Where do you hope to be in five years? 10?
DC: 2020 was an important year. It is so essential to prepare ourselves and set ourselves up with goals we would like to achieve.
However, it is just as vital to cherish the moments that are right in front of you. You never know what may come about spontaneously.
With that said, the here and now is just as crucial as the there and nearing. It’s imperative to stay grounded and recharge yourself with the things that spark joy. Mental endurance and stamina are so important when doing things that matter most to you. Over the next decade, I will continue to do my part in uniting, inspiring and encouraging others.
GoDaddy: What do you wish people knew about being an entrepreneur?
DC: You have to want it and be willing to do the work.
Opening yourself up to people who you don’t know is an extremely vulnerable feeling.
However, challenging the status quo and embracing vulnerability has led my brand and myself to be the strongest it’s/I’ve ever been.
GoDaddy: How important is community to you?
DC: It is so important. We are all in this together. Being a part of a community or letting others know that there is support for them is such a significant stepping stone in taking yourself to the next level. I hope I can be that for someone first as an individual as well as a brand.
GoDaddy: What do you hope to accomplish in 2021?
DC: 2021 will be a year of more learning, development and growth. It will be challenging but reassuring. I am excited for what is in store and the kind of impact I can make globally. There is so much more work to do across so many different avenues.
GoDaddy: How did 2020 impact your business and what changes did you make?
DC: 2020 impacted us all. In terms of my brand, my work consists of a lot of traveling and social interaction. It’s been an adjustment but working from home wasn’t something I was completely unfamiliar with doing. I usually would spend many hours during the week editing and taking calls online.
Though creating a product and product development at this time was not easy, on the flip side, we’re working through it, and I know I am not alone.
Thanks for taking the time to talk with us, Donté. Check out Donté’s website for more information on him and his business. You can also connect with him on Instagram under @donte.colley and via TikTok, @dontecolley.