We all know what Black Girl Magic is. We LIVE it. But for the people in the back, let me remind you –
We kill it. Everyday. & we do this for a lot of reasons. For one, sometimes we just have to. Most of us were either raised to be strong independent women who can become whoever and whatever we want to be OR were put in positions where we had no choice but to learn that.
Black women also have higher rates of diabetes, stroke, heart disease and other illnesses.
How? We just don’t rest.
We are known for placing everyone else over ourselves because in some situations, we have to work harder to get the same things everyone else has. Not to mention we live in a microwave generation – everyone wants what they want right NOW. But, our intentions aren’t bad, we just want the best for ourselves & are willing to put in the work. Endless nights studying, building our own businesses, working, whatever it takes to get to where we see ourselves. But ‘leveling up’ has become such a fad for some of us that we think we have to be ‘on’ 24/7. I’ve seen a million memes on Instagram saying things like – ‘The only thing that comes to a sleeper is dreams, Rest is for people who’ve made it already, etc.’
& I’ve seen one meme about the need to rest, even while building. Literally, one.
Rest is defined as:
To cease work or movement in order to relax, refresh oneself, or recover strength
Somewhere on this open road of living through social media, we’ve added quitting to the meaning of resting – but that’s the furthest thing from the truth.
You may be saying, ‘But I have goals! I can’t rest!’ Sis, those goals are the EXACT reason you have to.
Why? You can’t reach your goal if your tank is on E. Just like a car, you will run out of gas and be stranded on the side of the road if you keep driving that way.
& I know what you’re thinking because I’ve struggled with the same thoughts!
So trust me, resting will not lengthen your journey. We can’t look at breaks as being lazy. & quite honestly, not resting is what adds time to the process. If you wait to rest, you’ll burn out. Guaranteed. Getting back on track takes a lot longer when you let yourself get to E. Because at that point, you’re not only needing to refuel, but fix all the new issues that pop up when you drive on empty for too long – Now you’ve got engine problems, need a new transmission, and a bunch of other stuff that seem totally unrelated!
Everything ties back to how well you take care of yourself. You’re the shell. If the shell cracks, everything in it is put at risk – and is no longer protected by the shell that was put in place for that very reason. Sis, not resting just isn’t worth it. Because when life has to force you to… whew.
I was a senior in college and doing thee absolute most. Interning, full class load + one more so I could finish on time with my double major, I’d taken summer classes too – so no real break, working to have a little extra money, on top of senior year stresses PLUS spending regular time with family, friends and a boyfriend.
I was worn out. But still refused to rest. I guess I thought I was invincible because I was ‘young & should’ve had the energy.’ You only live once, right?
One night, I had an anxiety attack. I thought I was legit dying lbs. Rushed to the hospital and everything, but they didn’t find anything wrong, which made me panic even more. I ended up going to three hospitals that weekend. At the last one, I was hyperventilating and that’s when they told me it was ‘just anxiety & a panic attack.’ I’m like, JUST?!? I literally thought I was dying and they’re talking about how I’m fine. After that, I had no choice but to rest.
Since hindsight is indeed 20/20, I now know it wouldn’t have been the end of the world if I stayed an extra semester or stopped working for a while. But since I didn’t, I had to learn the hard way. You only live once IS right – so we don’t have to rush it all. I’d rather make it in one full piece so I can enjoy the victories. Not saying there won’t be struggles, but resting will definitely make you better equipped to handle them.
& it may not seem like it, but there is beauty in resting. That’s why they call it beauty sleep! HA! We need rest to be beautiful on the inside too. Now don’t mistake me, I know we have to work for what we want. & we’re probably the most equipped to do it all (reference the black girl magic stats at the top), but doing it all has got to include resting.
The million dollar question today is an easy one – How do you know when you need to rest? Well. You’re probably tired, down, & simply can’t focus. & honestly, you just… kinda know. I’m pretty sure it’s one of our superpowers.
Sis, if you know you need to rest, just rest. So you can live to actually enjoy the victories.
Being powerful doesn’t equal being invincible. We can’t run the world if we aren’t here.
What are some ways you prioritize resting? Have you struggled with forcing yourself to? Share!