In 1989, Stephen R. Covey published The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People as a self-help resource to help people become more disciplined on their quest for success. Since then, the book has guided people through it’s seven main habits: being proactive; begin with the end in mind; put first things first; think win-win; seek first to understand and then to be understood; synergize; and lastly, sharpen the saw.
While the book remains a valuable asset for people worldwide, let's re-imagine what this list would look like for Black folks in 2022. Adapt these 7 habits in the new year, set out to win and continue to ‘Move Black Forward.’
Listen to Something that Sparks Positivity and Gets Your Creative Juices Flowing
Creativity is all around us. Set the vibe for your day by listening to podcasts, binaural beats or any dope neo-soul playlist.
Podcasts like Higher Learning with Van Lathan and Rachel Lindsay, The Read with Kid Fury and Crissle, Culturati with former EBONY editor-in-chief Kierna Mayo and Small Doses with Amanda Seales are great ways to start.
Enjoy Life’s Simple Pleasures
In the midst of the hustle and bustle of every day, we deserve to take a moment to take in everything around us. Eat breakfast while watching the sunrise or go for a walk during the week. If it's one thing the past year has taught us, it's that life should not be taken for granted.
Speak Life Into Yourself Daily
The continuance of our community through oppression and strife is the product of our ancestor's many prayers. Tap into that power source and repeat affirmations of positivity, say a quick prayer when you hit the road, chant like Tina Turner or create a new mantra.
Uplift As You Climb
In order for us to be most successful, we must adapt an attitude of helping the next person succeed when we are granted an opportunity. Paying it forward not only evokes good karma but strengthens our community. In turn, it's also important to seek mentorship and connect with others. You never know who you may inspire and vice versa.
The Black community is consistently reminding folks that we are not "one size fits all" when it comes to our identity. We come from different backgrounds and come in all glorious shades and experiences. It is of the utmost importance that we make space for all of the identities we occupy and diversify our minds to be compassionate and understanding toward others. The more we come together to understand the struggles of every group within our great community, the more well off we will be.
Always Find Time to Dance
Lucille Clifton once wrote in her poem won't you celebrate with me "...come celebrate with me that everyday something has tried to kill me and has failed." Under the weight of systemic oppression, a global pandemic and life's trials, we still have so much to be grateful for. We must celebrate each of our wins and find joy in every single day.
Maintain and Seek Balance
Mental health within the Black community is still a taboo topic of conversation in fear of being perceived as weak or incapable. It is crucial that we begin to shift this way of thinking so that we not only improve our quality of life but find a sense of balance to accomplish all we set out to do.