Self-care is vital for those who commit themselves to antiracist work and especially for those who experience race-induced trauma.
Both antiracist work and race-induced trauma can be mentally, physically, and emotionally draining. Radical self-care goes well beyond responding to extreme overwhelming experiences; it is an essential ingredient for health and sustenance in the lifelong battle against racism and white supremacy.
It’s important to protect your well-being by unplugging from social media, using sick/mental health days to recharge, turning your Zoom video off, and saying “no” to people and work that drain you during this volatile time.
Check on Each Other
Utilize phone calls, individual or groups texts, social media groups, and DM’s to check on your community and loved ones when possible. Give space for each other to share your honest feelings and concerns during this time.
Have a “You” Day
Focus on yourself for a day, and indulge in what makes you happy. Consider giving yourself a home spa day, treating yourself to your favorite meal, or catching up on that series you love.
Respect Your Feelings
It is okay to not be okay! Take time to reflect and understand why you are feeling a certain way, be it sad, depressed, anxious, guilty, etc. Forcing yourself to move on removes the notion of healing. Sometimes, it’s okay to not reply to that text or email from someone checking in on you or to turn off that camera for a day during virtual work meetings.
Make Sure You’re Meeting Your Basic Needs
It’s hard to forget about your basic needs during times of racial crisis. Remember to take bio breaks, eat balanced meals, and sleep at least 6 hours daily. It helps to set reminders or create events in your calendar to remind yourself to take care of your basic needs.
Several of these mobile apps were created by and for Black people. All of those listed here encourage mental health awareness and self-care.
Developed by three Black men, Elevate is a mobile app that provides inspiring videos, self-care tips, and advice that serves as a guide for mental, physical, and emotional success.
Liberate is the #1 meditation app for the Black, Indigenous, and people of color community. Listen to dozens of guided meditations to ease anxiety, find gratitude, heal internalized racism and microaggressions, and celebrate blackness. For us, by us.
Headspace is your personal guide to mindfulness. Headspace offers you the tools and resources to look after your mind. And now, more than ever, it’s time to support those who really need it. If you’re unemployed, you can get a free year of Headspace Plus to help you get back on your feet.
POC Online Classroom is a website by and for people of color. They provide guidance and support that empower marginalized communities and assist in educating all people on critical social justice issues. POC Online Classroom has curated resources that highlight the importance of self-care, mental health care, and healing for people of color and within activist movements.
This online publication is dedicated to ending the stigma around mental health by providing a space for womxn of color to tell their stories of joy, pain, growth, and transformation while sharing practical solutions for holistic healing.
Insight Timer is a smartphone app and online community for meditation. The app has more than 45,000 free guided meditations, music, and talks posted by contributing experts.
Listen on Spotify or other music and podcast platform to be inspired and supported.
NPR Code Switch: Songs Giving Us Life
“Songs Giving Us Life” is a collection of songs that help when things get heavy. The list is continuously updated and featured on the podcast Code Switch.
Balanced Black Girl is a podcast dedicated to helping women of color feel their best. Episodes share approachable health, self-care, personal development, and well-being advice from Black women wellness experts.
Still Processing is cohosted by two Black, queer culture writers for the New York Times, Jenna Wortham and Wesley Morris. The pair provides insight into how they process, learn, and critique different topics in today’s society.
Over the past few years, Spotify has released playlists curated by former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama. These playlists mix together today’s top hits with previous classics that help people escape and enjoy the moment.
Choose from this sampling of videos and resources that promote the necessity of self-care.
- Radical Self-Care: Alicia Garza , AFROPUNK
- Radical Self-Care: 25 Tips for Black People , AFROPUNK
- 101 ways to take care of yourself when the world feels overwhelming , Upworthy
- 8 Ways You Can Practice Self-Care in the Face of Daily Racism , HuffPost
- What is Radical Self-Care , AFROPUNK