Dear Sista Friend,
Things we should be doing, but often fail to do:
Reflect through writing
A year ago, after much turmoil, I decided that I would take a gap year in between undergrad and grad school. In the moments leading up to this decision, writing had become my saving grace. Through this reflection, I was able to decide for myself, by myself, what was best for me. With the hustle and bustle of our busy lives, it is easy to put self-reflection on the back burner. However, it is important to know that there is great power in evaluating the “what’s”, “how’s” and “why’s” within our lives. It is important to not only consider where our lives are headed, but also reflect on the journey that we have been through. This is how we grow.
Take time to find your outlet whether it be yoga, working out, music, or meditation. This sacred, personal time with yourself is vitally important to your health and success in both your personal and professional life.
Black women’s speech can often times be found under a microscope, misinterpreted, and misunderstood. In fear of being labeled as the ABW (angry Black woman), we often relinquish our power when we protect our words, at least I know I do.
My mother occasionally tells me the story of the exact moment she found her voice. She describes herself as being shy and timid, similar to my younger self (and my modern self). Working in retail well before my existence, she encountered an unruly customer that she allowed to steal her voice. The uneasiness of that moment led her to make a commitment to always speak up and advocate for herself. And if you know my mother, you know that she has maintained this commitment and doesn’t let very much slide past her.
We must always reject the voice that tells us that our contribution is invaluable. Day by day, I remind myself that even in the toughest of situations, my voice matters. And so does yours.
At the end of July, I packed up my entire life and moved to Columbus, Ohio. Everyday has been a new adventure and learning experience that I am loving. But I will admit, adjusting to a new life has been tough. My main coping mechanism has been the act of self affirmation. Each day I remind myself that I am here– in Columbus, in grad school, and in this very moment– for a reason and I am capable of succeeding each day. I am proud of myself for taking this journey. Sis, when your journey gets rough don’t ever hesitate to remind yourself that you are strong, and you are worthy, and you are capable. Don’t wait for the affirmation of others.
As I go to through continuous transformations within my life, personally and professionally, I am reminded that these are important behaviors that I must continue to commit myself to doing, and would encourage you to incorporate in your own life. It is important that we take the necessary steps to maintain our well-being and continue growing as women.
Your Sista Friend,