Updated: Dec 16, 2022
Oftentimes I've been called the "strong Black woman" trope by people I know and those I don't. Every time I hear this phrase the light in my eyes grows a little bit dimmer.
This trope of how the ideal Black woman should act seeks to destroy the well-being of all Black woman. It feels like every waking second I am putting on this armor to portray this narrative.
We are told to keep our emotions under wraps, that crying is weakness, we don't have time for tears we must serve others and be the caretakers of our families.
Were told to be independent and throw our hands up in the air for paying our own bills, getting an education, and working twice as hard as our white counterparts.
The "Soft Life" hashtag is rejecting this notion of a hard life. A life of struggle and sacrifice.
Type in #softlife on social media and you will find countless TikToks and Reels of Black woman continuously pouring into themselves everyday.
The term “soft life” originated in the Nigerian influencer community as slang for living a life of comfort and low stress.
The "soft life" phenomenon focuses on taking care of one's mind and body and putting yourself first.
The term has also been characterized as building a stronger relationship with God, making yourself proud, and ultimately gives us the green light to know it's okay to spend energy on ourselves.
In this "Soft Life" era Black women are reminded that although life is hard it is not the only option. We are allowed to expand our dreams and horizons to live in a softer existence.
This is not the first time this concept of a "Soft Life" has surfaced. In 1999 Bell Hooks wrote a book called "All About Love: New Visions," where she explored how showing ourselves self-love, compassion, and acceptance is an act of softness.
This came during a Black Feminist movement for radical rest.
One of the best guides to how to be self-loving is to give ourselves the love we are often dreaming about receiving from others.