I work four jobs, am a full-time graduate student, run two businesses, and have two podcasts. The questions I often get are “how do you sleep?”, “do you have a life?”, “How are you even alive right now?” Truth is, sometimes I have to ask myself these questions as well. The answer however is quite simple. Holistic balance. Balance of the mind, body, and spirit. As a Libra rising, and Virgo sun, moon, and mercury, some people say that achieving balance must come easy to me. And while yes, it is true, Virgos have killer planning and organizational skills, and Libras literally symbolize balance, spirituality is unique to each person’s own spirit. Finding spiritual balance will look different for everyone, but it is very possible for everyone to achieve. And I am going to give you some pointers on how to do just that for yourself.
My full-time job is on Capitol Hill, working for Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib. If you have not heard of her, she is the first Muslim congresswoman (alongside Ilhan Omar) and has a history of being attacked by Tr*mp and many other conservative politicians due to her progressive views. She is no stranger to mainstream media, which means that working for her, as her staff and communications assistant, I am reminded every single day of two key things.
- People are crazy (as hell)
- I am beyond blessed fortunate
Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE my job. The Congresswoman is the realest and kindest person you could ever meet, and her staff, my coworkers are such a reflection of that. But let me tell you, we are some strong individuals. Every day I open hate letters, sometimes death threats and other horrible, heinous things. I won’t go into detail, but people do not hold back. I mean they truly have nothing better to do than sit home and spew hate. In addition, our office does constituent casework, meaning we help residents of the Congresswoman’s district (my hometown of Detroit) with issues like infrastructure, social security, familial death, and homelessness, just to name a few. All of this as you can imagine can get pretty overwhelming. My work environment makes it fun, and manageable because we know how taxing the work can be, so we place a high value on self-care.
Let me just remind you that this is just one of my four jobs. I won’t even get into the work of all the other ones, but I want you to know that even while working a full-time job that requires me to be empathetic while also having a strong guard up, I am still sane, and actually, very happy.
Having a self-care routine is very important for me. Yes, I know, I am a Virgo, so routine is in my nature, but I think that everyone can benefit from having some sort of routine that involves simple daily practices to add a bit more light into their life. It can be as simple as playing a playlist of your favorite songs every morning, eating your favorite dessert for lunch a few times a week, or staying up an extra hour to watch an hour of that show you just can’t get enough of. Or all three! In my opinion, you can never have too much self-care. If you are not living for yourself, then who are you living for? That may sound cliche, but if you are not waking up every day and living to fulfill yourself and your own needs and happiness, then what exactly are you doing? In the song “Lipstick,” Willow Smith says that, “I think we live in a labyrinth that was created in my mind.” Only we have the power to create the lives we want for ourselves. That does not mean that everything will always be easy, but if we are living and thriving in our truest selves and working towards our goals and our highest selves, we will never feel as if our efforts are being wasted.
I am in graduate school pursuing an MFA in Writing for TV School. I know that my end goal is to have my own production company, and every job that I am working on now, every avenue that I am following, is pushing me further toward that goal. Even though it may not seem like that from an outside perspective, I know that every day I am living in my truth, and embodying my true potential in several avenues.
Mornings for me always start with incense and meditation, sometimes with some powerful herbs in my system (mugwort and rose are two of my favorites). I usually do yoga while I meditate. Over time, my meditations have gotten progressively longer, and I have been able to incorporate more self-care into my morning routines because good morning self-care usually leads to better good night’s sleep. After my meditations, I brush my teeth, do my hair, put on my outfits (usually picked out the night before) , put on jewelry, and one of my signature lipsticks. Getting dressed up in the morning alone is a form of self-care for me. I feel like a real-life Bratz doll every day, being able to change my look and create a daily aesthetic is so fun to me. Because it’s pumpkin season, and anything pumpkin flavored tastes like heaven to me, I stocked up on a plethora of pumpkin products which are mostly breakfast items, which I happily consume each morning.
Everything we do is connected. What we eat, what we watch, what we listen to. Maintaining a balance in that is so important. I am from Detroit, and in Detroit, everyone listens to Detroit rap. I can honestly say that not everything that is being rapped about is going to elevate me and raise my consciousness. Unfortunately, such a vital and celebrated part of our culture is laced with misogyny and materialism, like a good chunk of music in general is today. But the songs turn the whole city up, so we all still listen. This music reminds me of home and gives me a feeling that no other music can give me and I know that it grounds me because of the correlation to my roots, my city. In addition, I balance it with most of the other music I listen to such as constant affirmations and lyrics that speak to my highest self. I have many playlists to match whatever mood I am trying to embody. I have a playlist for each chakra, a playlist of songs about the moon, a playlist of alternative rock songs by Black artists, a playlist called “This Playlist Smells Like Incense and Wine” and many, many more. Whenever I am feeling a way, whenever I want to open a chakra, do some shadow work, cheer myself up, I have a playlist for it all. I really resonate with sounds and music, and this works for me like no other. For example, when I experience menstrual cramps, my sacral chakra playlist takes the cramps away in minutes. Everything is connected. When you set intentions, and you live every day embodying those intentions, you see results. When you treat your life like you are the main character, you see results.