Alright – so today we’ve got the honor of introducing you to Mystkue Woods. We think you’ll enjoy our conversation, we’ve shared it below.
Mystkue , thanks for joining us, excited to have you contributing your stories and insights. How did you get your first job in the field that you practice in today?
If I had to choose my first “job” in this field, I would definitely have to say it started on the campus of Towson University. Believe it or not, there was a time when I didn’t even know or had ever heard of the term “Sexologist.” I was a sophomore fellowshipping with friends. I had begun to build a life-long bond in the Black Student Union office which we affectionately referred to as the BSU. My good friend, a brother of mine, said to me “Aye Sis, you’re good at this, you should be a Sexologist!” I thought it was crazy because I had never heard of the term, nor did I know that it was lucrative. I mean I knew that sex sells, but I didn’t really know. I played it cool and told him and others who were participating in the discussion that I was just answering authentically based on my experiences with love, sex and relationships. It was that moment where my work in the field began. I found myself always having in depth conversations about sex and sexuality and how that intersects with gender roles, race, and many other entities in life. Truthfully, while I was just being a listening yet critical ear for my friends about their relationship woes, I was really grooming myself for the future. Initially, I did not immediately have goals and aspirations for myself as a Sexuality Arts Educator as I do today. That moment planted the seed for the pathway that I am on today. From that moment, I operated on how I could make the things I love come together to be formidable for me. I started researching more and more about sex, specifically relationships and human interaction around pleasure and then I researched how the art modalities of dance (creative movement), storytelling, theatre (drama), music, poetry and visual arts and how they play a part on how society views the body, sexuality and relationships. In researching, I have come to begin honing my niche and have been able to cultivate a following to include speaking opportunities and workshops geared around arts, integration and sexuality in its entirety, hence my title, Sexuality Arts Educator.
Great, appreciate you sharing that with us. Before we ask you to share more of your insights, can you take a moment to introduce yourself and how you got to where you are today to our readers
I am a Sexuality Arts Educator, Content Creator, Author, Writer, Business Owner and Collaborator. All in all, my role as a Sexuality Arts Educator is to do the work of educating, empowering and elevating an individuals’ sexuality through the lens of the art modalities of dance (creative movement), storytelling, theatre (drama), music, poetry and visual arts to describe and discover their erotic energy and sexual freedom. My brand is split into three entities to include a publication service. The publication service is the element of me as a Content Creator, Collaborator and Writer. One of my talents is curriculum development. I really enjoy creating new, inclusive and innovative lesson plans about various topics in sexuality. I also love writing and creating spaces for visual pleasure through text by evoking emotion whether the audience is blog-like, newsletter or periodical. The second part of my business is the Education portion where I have written a six-part curriculum that focuses on retraining the idea of sex education as a misnomer and instead embracing what we experience naturally as human beings using the arts. Some topics covered in my curriculum include but are not limited to: The Art of Erotic Writing as a Self-Discovery Method, The Skin I’m in: Body Embrace through Floor/Chair Dance, Cracking the Code of Consent and Safer Sex Code through Theatre. Finally, I am the creator of a sexually liberating clothing line entitled “Sen•Sex•Sen” Apparel. The purpose of the line is to break through the patriarchal views of sexuality and celebrate diversity and sexual freedom.
We often hear about learning lessons – but just as important is unlearning lessons. Have you ever had to unlearn a lesson?
A lesson I have had to unlearn is that “It is okay to not be okay.” Although it may sound really cliche, it is the truth. As an entrepreneur but also a first-generation college grad, there has been no pathway of success to look at as a blueprint as I am creating it. Oftentimes, it feels like I am walking blindly and have to operate with just hope. That coupled with pressure brings a lot of anxiety, including Imposter Syndrome. There have been so many days and nights that have gone to bed thinking, “I can’t do this,” “I won’t make it,” ” I should stop while I’m ahead and just settle to work for someone else.” All these things come from a place of oppression. Although, I had a positive upbringing, the career I chose is overly critical and very much male dominated and often discriminatory. I personally believe there is a line of racism that travels within the field of Sexuality. Building a brand and trying to overcome the obstacles like misogyny, financial disparity and more is not an easy feat and even with the amazing mentors and support that I have sometimes wanted to give up. This journey can be overwhelming and it is important to embrace self-care as a way to stay healthy and be successful. Thus, embracing when you are not ok humanizes you and makes you relatable.
Other than training/knowledge, what do you think is most helpful for succeeding in your field?
Besides training/knowledge, I think the most helpful thing to know for succeeding is to be humble and always willing and hungry to learn. Advancements in Public Health, specifically sexual health, are ever changing. In this industry it is very important to ensure that we are providing medically accurate information as well as information that is inclusive and diverse. After humility, one has networking, Human Sexuality is about the connection of people. This is super important as your reputation is everything and it is important for you to be able to create tactful, mutually beneficial relationships because as a collective, we are all trying to reach the same common goal.
- Website: www.mystkue.com
- Instagram: @mystkue
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mystkue
- Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/mystkue/
- Twitter: @penofmystkue
- Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC7N53CCJfLLPx2dVV4rU8Cg
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