Shifting the STRONG BLACK WOMAN Narrative | Shades of Strong

Get Naked: /ɡet / nākid/ 1. The strong black woman’s courage to be vulnerable, honest, transparent and free from the burden of strength. 2. Unafraid to come undone. 3. Not afraid to relinquish the false honor of being strong.  4. Unmasking one’s authentic self in life, love and relationships.
5. Learning to love life unmasked.

 I know you!

Yep, I sure do!

You’re the girl walking around in those super cute heels, hair done, nails done, wearing a gorgeous dress that would make Carrie Bradshaw do a double take. Everybody loves you because you bring the fun – always laughing and breaking out in random song and dance.

I see you!

 on your chest making ish happen!

Mmm Hmm.  I see ya!! Head up! Shoulders back!  Heart ST-RonG!

Yes, girl!  I. SEE. YOU!

Seriously, you’re out here in these streets working hard to make Tom, Dick and Mary think this ish is easy!

And it’s working! But what you don’t want anybody to know, the thing you try to forget when you’re WORKING it in the daytime, is that… you’re secretly crying yourself to sleep at night.

And on the nights when you’re not crying you’re just lying in the dark staring at the ceiling, hoping that somehow in the middle of the excruiatingly LOUD silence, you’ll find the answers to the questions that consume your thoughts every second, every minute of every day.

Is this really all there is to life?

When do I get to be happy?

Why is God ignoring me?

But then you get up every morning and
it’s back to that cute little mask….

You know the mask – the one with
the fly lipstick smiles that promises to hide
the eyes on the verge of tears?

That mask of the super cute jeans and shoes
that covers the heart that’s breaking
with each exhale?

That life of the party, handling-my-business
mask that makes each breath just a little more bearable.

The MASK that has you lying to the world
and those you care about?

Yeah, that mask! 

And YES, I called you out for wearing it!


In the name of all that is STRONG, BLACK, and WOMAN you’re working it girl!

Seriously, it actually looks good on you…

except for the edges that are curled and worn from constantly taking it off and putting it back on.

…except for the cracks and tear stains from when you broke down in the restroom by yourself at lunch. 

The world doesn’t notice. Like I said, you look good!

But,  I. SEE. YOU.

Because I am YOU.

I’m that girl at least three days out of the week because I have this horrible
habit of trying to be everything everybody wants me to be

… and in the words of Lionel Richie, 

I’m not happy when I try to fake it.    

So I’m slowly learning how to deal with all the ish that’s going on the inside of me so that I can take off the mask, put it aside, and trade it in for my


How does taking off the mask get you a Strong Black Woman card? Here’s the deal… For years I’ve watched us suffer in silence because society has conditioned us, and religion has made us believe that we must have it together at all times – even when tragedy strikes.

So here’s my question to you (and me) …

Why are we letting other
people tell us what strength is?

Why can’t we dance to the beat of our own



I’m not out here trying to keep everything together.
I know from years of observing the ‘strong’ black women
in my own life, that I won’t ever thrive that way.

So, I’m out here trying to be easy like a Sunday morning.

Okay. I’m done with the Lionel Richie lyrics.

Seriously though!  Why can’t we?

Why can’t we dance to the beat of our STRONG?

IT IS OUR BIRTHRIGHT to be our truest, realest, unmasked
every second,  every minute, every hour of every day.

We were born naked and vulnerable  – freely embracing and
experiencing every emotion.

We DON’T have to give that up to walk in strength.
You see, contrary to what we’ve been led to believe,  



So, don’t FAKE ITDitch that mask and  GET NAKED.

Sad because your babies are growing up way too fast? HONOR THAT.

Hurt because he  cheated on youHONOR THAT.

Angry because somebody ate the last slice of cheese cake?  HONOR THAT TOO.

Just wanna cry because your family, your relationships,
your money, your job, all of it kinda sucks right now?


It’s your life. You can cry if you want to.

You can fall apart if you want to.

You can claim that permission right now!

No one has the right to tell YOU what you can and shouldn’t honor in YOUR life.

That’s why I created GET NAKED LIVE.

This is NOT just another podcast where I post a weekly episode sharing my journey to dancing to the beat of my own STRONG. It’s NOT just one-on-one interviews and round table discussions on what it means to be a STRONG BLACK WOMAN.

THIS IS A MOVEMENT  grounded in embracing our emotional vulnerabilities, standing in our truths even when it hurts, and boldly telling the world that WE DECIDE WHAT STRENGTH IS FOR US.


She bounces back like a yo-yo,
but she does it while being perfectly imperfect

She is transparent, but knows how to
respectfully get folks out of her business.

She is unafraid of being seen for who she really is, but is very clear
about her boundaries and the risks she’ll take in life and in love.

She occasionally finds herself questioning God’s motives in the midst
of her own confusion, but is still very much  in love with Him.

She is  unashamed, but lovingly and gracefully accepts
responsibility for the choices she makes.

She is STRONG. She is HAPPY. She is NAKED.  She is FREE.  

And I would be remiss if I didn’t invite you to join me on this journey to redefining the


Be a part of a MOVEMENT that is cultivating and nurturing
seeds of true strength, hope, healing, and happiness into a
beautiful forest of

© Get Naked LIVE 2018. All Rights Reserved.

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