In a social media driven reality nobody meets the standard, not Beyonce, not Heather Lindsey , not Devon Franklin, maybe Cardi B, just maybe.  We idolize both our peers and celebrities who look perfect on the gram, those who just got a new job or appear to be in a happy relationship, living their best lives. Maybe you feel the pressure from your family to move back home and or settle down into “conventional” adulthood, if that’s not enough we live in a world that fears “the other;”anyone or anything that doesn’t fit in the mold. The challenges that come along with being either Black, female, LGBTQI, Muslim or an immigrant in our society are incredibly difficult and can have lasting effects on our mental health and self esteem. I pray for the Black woman who has all of those identities.  Our generation is dialed in on “being woke” in these perilous days and times. If we truly are woke Millennials would be familiar with Kimberle` Crenshaw’s work on Intersectionality

Millennials who weren’t born with rose-gold spoons in their mouths are constantly trying to level up in society, which equates to: get money, get education, get love, get happiness. Everyday struggles can make you feel like you aren’t going to ever get where you really want to be in life or that you are constantly failing. We are all subject to scrutiny, but self scrutiny is the worst! I am here to tell you and affirm that you are exactly where you’re supposed to be (If you ain’t, you’ll get there). One of your most important tools in leveling up is self-affirmation. Self-affirmation is caring for yourself verbally. Speaking positivity over self, to yourself. 

Here are a few tips to get you started:

1. Communicate to yourself aloud daily.

“I am strong. I am beautiful. I am intelligent.“ 

*Shekinah’s Glory: Say your affirmation in 1st, 2nd and 3rd person: I am strong. You are strong. Shekinah is strong.

2. Being Mary Jane Sticky Notes

Write your affirmations on sticky notes and place them on your bathroom mirror, bedroom walls, and peg/white boards. Get a notebook, write the vision and make it plain!

3.Create an Affirmation Jar. 

Get a mason jar and a pack a of index cards. 

*Shekinah’s Glory: Cut your index card in half, depending on the length of your affirmation.

I received my first affirmation jar from the amazing community-organizer-extraordinaire: @Krystallisms.

If you have no idea what you need to affirm, write down all of your insecurities and come up with an affirmation to counteract it. For instance, I am very insecure about my acne and natural hair. So I daily, I affirm myself by saying aloud and writing down: My skin is beautiful. My hair is beautiful. My skin is healing and my hair is beautiful at any length. You can also, just write in your journal!

I challenge you to begin your affirmation journey and share this with a friend—maybe even make them an affirmation jar! 


Shekinah Hockenhull