7 Steps to Revive Your Soul, Stay Woke, and Love Your Blackness

Rise and shine!

Flips on the TV.

Powers up the Android.

Headline: Officer involved in shooting of unarmed black_____ (child, woman, man, father, husband, sister, daughter, grandma, good-doer…)

Although, it’s the new normal, it’s not normal to wake up to gruesome footage of black people being killed in the street like animals. Do you remember the reaction to the Rodney King video? The world was shocked. Nowadays, we just keep scrolling for more.

You have to save yourself. The old folks say, “Smile to keep from crying.” It’s true! A mind is a terrible thing to waste, but the brain you save… could be your own. Despite the systematic, blatant violence we face at the hands of law enforcement and others, we must preserve ourselves for our families, for our loved ones, and for activism.

Below are 7 steps to help you revive your soul, stay woke, and love your blackness:

  1. Log off. Shut it down. Take a break from social media, television, radio, etc. Connect with family and friends face to face. Speak encouraging words to your kin-folk, tell them you love them. Be in the moment.
  2. Reconnect with nature. I know the last thing you want to think about is camping, but humans aren’t the only species you can interact with.  First of all, our ancestors are in nature. Trees, other animals, mountains, and bodies of water can talk…. you just have to listen. You may learn something. Not to mention, a nice hike or walk in the park will release endorphins and leave you feeling renewed.
  3. You’re not a professor, teacher, pastor, or a consultant. Some of y’all deserve a big ‘ol paycheck, because you literally have a lesson plan, and we are on unit 7. Yes, there is always that one person that speaks so much non-truth that you literally cannot stand it. So what do you do? You become Professor X, but you are not a professor (unless you are…if so, kudos). It is not your responsibility to teach others about basic humanity, history, or race. Some folks don’t want to learn. You can’t teach everybody! Instead, bask in your knowledge, because no one can take it from you.
  4. Think critically. The first news story isn’t always the true story. Don’t react so quickly. Think. Is that how this really works? Don’t turn on CNN, see the 7 black people they decided to parade on air and think, “Damn, we gotta do better.” You’re better than that. Go look up the origins of the LA Riots, Newark riots, Tulsa riots…. We are not the only ones that need to do better.
  5. Don’t be scared. This may be controversial, but please don’t be scared. Whether you ride on faith, knowledge, or a combination of both, don’t be scared. Instead, be aware, be vocal, be ready, and be vigilant.
  6. Take a stance. Not everyone is comfortable marching. Some people don’t have time to call their legislators and city officials. Some people don’t want to post a controversial Facebook status or tweet. Do what works for you, but DO SOMETHING CONSTRUCTIVE. Something constructive could be saying hello to that black neighbor you always ignore. It could be walking up to police officers in front of Dunkin Donuts to ask them their take on current events instead of scowling at them from your stoop. Maybe it’s texting a friend who lives in Charlotte, Tulsa, or Washington, D.C. and saying “how you livin’?”
  7. Look in the mirror. Black is beautiful. Believe the hype.

 

Post Contributed by The DW Blog

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