Black Women, Be Kind To Yourselves in 2021

Black Women, Be Kind To Yourselves in 2021

- Written by Cori Woods -

Hey Queen, be kind to yourself. I know 2020 brought more psychological strain than you expected. Your mind is continually racing and tricking you into thinking that you didn’t do enough and that you’re an imposter. I know it is so much you wish you could’ve done, but 2020 delayed some plans. I know people are demanding so much from you, but you don’t have that much energy to give; that’s okay. You’ve jumped over so many hurdles, and I can only imagine how exhausting that may have been for you. We’re dealing with unemployment, mistreatment at our jobs, trying to succeed in our careers, parenting, divorces, dating, and trying to be the best partner in our relationships. 

On top of that, financial straining, surviving the pandemic and continuously reminding the world that our existence and humanity matters. It feels like a game of tug of war; there’s always one thing after another. However, I need you to be kind to yourself in 2021. It’s okay if you don’t have it together. It’s okay if you need to let those tears fall down your cheeks. It’s okay to say NO. I’m here to remind you that despite all the commitments, responsibilities, deadlines, and insecurities you may have, give yourself some grace. 


There was a quote that I saw on the internet that resonated with me. It said, “You gonna cry about it or boss up? First off, I’mma do both,” which is true; why can’t I do both?! Crying shows that you’re human, and it’s a natural human response that we should embrace and not hold in. Growing up, I used to be scolded by adults when I cried about things, and sometimes it was the smallest of things, but everyone deserves to feel their emotions, especially children. When we cry, we release all the stress and toxins that cause our bodies to tense up. After a good cry, there is pain-relief, mood enhancement, and a soothing effect. It feels so damn good to cry. 

We all are emotionally different. Some people may have a wall up to block themselves from revisiting past pain, grief, or trauma, and that’s okay too, but honor yourself. No matter what, allow yourself to feel what you’re feeling. Let it out, sit in it. Reflect, and then breathe. If you watch a funny movie that makes you cry with laughter, do it! Enjoy it! If you’re overwhelmed with all the tasks you need to complete and want to break down and cry, do it! Be frustrated! Or, you may see something sad on the news that broke your heart, and the tears start flowing, let it. It only shows that you have empathy in your heart. However you process life, know that you don’t need to carry anything that will force you to drag your feet. You don’t need to hold on to hate, sadness, and pain. “Bossing up” doesn’t mean to stop caring or pretend that you’re “good.” It means acknowledging  you’re growing and admitting you’re human and have the right to be human moving forward. 


I’m a perfectionist, and that sometimes causes me to have a lot of self-doubts. The thought of me making a mistake makes me want to pass out. Whenever I make a mistake, I want to die inside. Dramatic, I know. I start to feel guilty, and I begin telling myself that I’m not good enough. Negative self-talk is never the way to go because you start believing what you’re telling yourself. We have to allow ourselves to fail, to evolve. Failures are teaching moments and not punishments. Don’t underestimate yourself, and remember you are more than capable.

I want us all this year to tell ourselves that, “I didn’t succeed this round, but I will do better next time.” There is always a next time. There is still room for us to improve ourselves and be the best we can be. However, we have to praise ourselves more often during the journey. Everyone trips and falls; that’s nothing new. You just have to get back up every time and be proud that you did. Be confident in the person that you are; there is no one like you. You are a flower on this earth, so water yourself so you can grow and blossom.


There’s nothing wrong with independence or self-reliance, but we sometimes need to depend on someone to guide us. For me personally, I am apprehensive to ask for or receive help; mostly because of pride. While it does feel lovely to accomplish things on your own, asking for help doesn't diminish that. When you create positive relationships, there will be a pool of resources for you when you need guidance. You will have a support system to lean on when life gets tough or if you have questions. Interdependence is part of human survival. 

I don’t think anyone can say that they have gotten somewhere on their own. There are people in our lives that have taught us different aspects of life. Appreciate the people in your circle because when life gets hectic, you have people you can reach out to for support. 


Taking time off is essential, and we rob ourselves from doing that to keep up with the hustle. We overwork ourselves in fear of laziness. But, there are so many benefits to resting. For example, when you sleep, you’re allowing yourself to recover—you’re giving your body time not to be overworked. 

Rest can look like a lazy day. It’s okay not wanting to do anything. You may want to watch TV all day, snuggling with your blanket; isn’t that paradise?! Lazy days help you remember what brings you enjoyment and remembering to slow down. Rest is putting the phone down. Staying up to date with current events and scrolling to keep up with a social media algorithm is mentally draining. The attention you give your phone should be directed towards you and your needs. The phone can wait. If you feel consistently stressed or overworked, your body is saying it needs to rest; so listen, you will feel so much better. 


The most important relationship to have is with yourself. You’re no use to anyone if you don't take the necessary steps to do what brings you joy. We all know life is challenging and complex. However, let’s be proud that we wake up everyday living in this chaotic world and give ourselves some grace. We’re all doing our best and maintaining the best we can.

Live and be kind to yourself.



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Well said. The lazy days, giving myself grace and especially the cry when I need to all are reminders I need to give to myself more. Keeping this for the days I need the affirmation. Thank you!

Kelley Rogers

This was beautifully said. As I sit here and read this tears fall from my eyes, this is how I’m currently feeling. I didn’t realize so many others felt the same way it’s so refreshing to read this and know that I am not alone . Thanks Cory for taking the time out to let us know that it’s OKAY to have those feelings, especially during these times.

kenyatta Hunter

🙌🏾🙌🏾🙌🏾🙌🏾🙌🏾 SAY IT LOUDER FOR THE PEOPLE IN THE BACK!!! This was awesome!!! Love you😘😘

Sheryl Hunter

Beautifully expressed! Well written and well received!

Pam Kennedy

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