Words By Zoe Zorka
In today’s often times contentious social media environment, motivation and inspiration can be hard to find. Far too many apps, which were originally created to build social communities, blast anger, division, and controversy with the touch of a smartphone icon.
A year ago, Shelby Tinsley, armed with a master’s degree in psychology, entrepreneurial spirit, and a crew of positive friends, set out to change that dynamic by creating iShallBe, a smartphone app created in partnership with Troy Thompson of TDCT, that serves as a platform for everyone to “speak nothing but positive things for life’s journey into existence.” iShallBe provides a daily affirmation to uplift users through quotes, music, inspirational videos, and motivational messages. In addition, iShallBe encourages users to not only share their posts, known as “iShallBe Statements” with the community, but to also support and affirm one another.
While the app was only launched recently in November of 2017, the foundation of iShallBe started long before smartphone technology on the day that Tinsley was born (iShallBe is a play on Shelby’s name). As the story goes, her parents didn’t know what to name her, and as her mother was in the hospital in labor, her aunt, who was trying to figure out what to name her, said, “she shall be…whatever she puts her mind to.” From there, she was named Shelby, and the iShallBe philosophy became a guiding force in her life. The daily affirmation quotes are quotes that Tinsley has collected throughout her life- church, graduation ceremonies, motivational YouTube channels, books, and conversations with friends.
More importantly, iShallBe is a platform with an emphasis on positivity and community. According to Tinsley, the app was created “with the strong desire to encourage others to get through all trials and tribulations, and remind you that there will be victory in the end of all troubles. iShallBe supplies nourishment to both mind and soul and is a place for everyone to speak nothing but positive things for life’s journey into existence.”
iShallBe regularly hosts community events, including most recently, a showcase of local Black designers (in partnership with Soulcial Scene), as well as past events such as a the iShallBe Restored: “Panel Discussion on Finding Your Happy Place”. Their next event on the horizon is iShallBe Fit: a live cooking demonstration focusing on healthy dishes.
Most notably, however, is the platform’s recent celebration of Black History month. Throughout February, iShallBe has been featuring various “movers and shakers that represents Black Excellence,” in cities throughout North America.
While Tinsley may be the namesake behind the app, she also is quick to credit her amazing team of volunteers that help with planning, organizing events, and pushing the message on a daily basis.
In just under six short months, the app has been downloaded throughout the United States as well as spreading to other countries, reaching as far as Nigeria. There’s no doubt that iShallBe “shall be” worldwide by the end of the year!
Tinsley wraps up with a summary of her life’s philosophy. “It is up to you to remain faithful and speak nothing but love, joy, and positivity in your life.”
For if you speak it (or type it), it shall be!
Follow @iShallBe__on Twitter and Instagram.