Written by Bombshell contributor Nikkhalia M. @brwnpoppy
A TikTok comment I read under a ‘Soft Girl: Day in the Life’ mini vlog said “I feel like soft life is just black girl luxury rebranded.” Hm… I’m not sure I agree with this! Although the luxury girls are utilizing ‘soft life’ to describe their Cabo vacations – the two terms are not equivalent.
Big shout out to Urban Dictionary for the following definitions.
Soft Life /sôft līf/ [noun] – A life of ease, peace, comfort, and intentional happiness. It consists of mutual relationships, clarity, and self care.
Black Girl Luxury /blak ɡərl ˈləɡZH(ə)rē/ [noun] – The normalization of abundance, prosperity, and black women having high-end lifestyles. This term was created to highlight black women in wealth, leisure, opulence, success, and glamor.
While money can help, adopting a soft life doesn’t require an excess of wealth. Soft life is a mentality – the series of decisions we make and the boundaries we hold; it is the community we keep, and the systems we put in place for ourselves.
RELATED: 8 Pillars of a Simply Luxurious Life
A few years ago, I fell into the girl boss wave. I thought I needed to hustle, work and grind from 9-5 and then 5-9, so I could get the luxury lifestyle. But, I’m already feeling burnt out. I realized what’s more important to me than luxury is time to relax, be at peace, and do the things I love.
Since I’m not hustling in that way, I don’t have that much money! Not yet, anyhow. But I’m still determined to live a soft life, even if I don’t have expendable money to throw at my problems.
There’s a few tools I’ve implemented into my lifestyle that I think could be helpful tips for you.
So, how can you live a softer life? Especially on a budget? Here are 9 ways to do it.
1. Build up your emotional intelligence.
A major key to living a soft life is a minimal, and I mean the absolute bare minimum, amount of stress. Stress raises your cortisol, which can lead to fatigue, headaches, and weight gain – aka more stress. To avoid stress, build up your emotional intelligence, because everything in your existence is mental.
Ask yourself: how do I respond to major disappointments and minor inconveniences? If you’re someone who allows negative situations to overcome you, learn to manage your emotional responses through breathwork, meditation, and positive affirmations.
Did a friend cancel on you at the last minute? Hit up someone else, or have a fun solo date! A boy you’re talking to isn’t acting right? Get dressed up and go meet another!
To live a soft life, you must take control of your emotions and maintain a positive outlook on life, even when you’re burdened.
Here is a concrete tool to use: always keep something on hand that brings you joy. Gotta stay strapped and ready!
For me, it’s jazz music. Having headphones with me is a must! Once I put these headphones in and play some jazz, the peasants cease to exist. It’s just me, in my own world.
2. Establish boundaries to more consistently make better decisions.
None of us are perfect. We all make mistakes and spend way too much money, or drink far too much on a night out, and regret it the next morning.
That’s okay. But, you need to stop making the same mistakes over and over.
Sometimes, the answer is ‘No.’ And, sometimes we need to say ‘no’ to our friends. In order for you to live a soft life, free of headaches, and burnt holes in your wallet – set boundaries. Maybe that’s setting
a bedtime for yourself and sticking to it. You owe it to yourself to get 7-8 hours of sleep every night.
Developing boundaries extends outside of partying, as well. Anyone, or anything in your life that is asking you to step out of alignment with the goals you’ve set for yourself needs to remain at a distance.
3. Live intentionally within your means.
There’s a false notion that because you don’t earn a large amount of money, you can’t enjoy life’s conveniences. But you can enjoy life with the money you have right now!
The key is being intentional with your money. And the super key is to not try to keep up with the Joneses! Ask yourself: “What experiences do I enjoy the most and how do I make space for them in my budget?”
I’ll use myself as an example:
For me, I really enjoy eating out. I eat out every day. I do not like to cook! But eating out is expensive, so how do I afford it?
I’ve sacrificed in areas that didn’t bring too
I don’t grocery shop. I’m not even going to
lie to myself and say “I’m cooking this week.” I’m car-less! Instead, I take public transportation or scooter, and I Uber when I need to. This saves me a ton of money. Especially with today’s gas prices!
I also use my family’s account for all my subscriptions, shamelessly! I workout at home using free YouTube workouts. I cut expenses anywhere I can!
Take a look at your budget. What can you remove from your monthly bills to ensure the total of your necessary expenses (housing, phone, debt) falls under 50% of your monthly income? That’ll leave you with the other 50% to spend as you please!
What can you do without, to make space for what you want?
4. Ask for help.
Hyper-independence is ghetto. It’s for the birds. Be the damsel in distress! Stop trying to YouTube tutorial everything and ask. for. help!
Along with asking for help, try to share resources within your community. You and your girlfriend could be sharing
subscriptions rather than each having your own! Apple Music is $15 for a family plan and $10 for an individual – play smart, not hard! Work together, ladies!
5. Surround yourself with loved ones and rest.
When we’re caught up in the hustle and bustle of daily life, we tend to forget to check in with the ones we love the most. They’re caught up too, so they haven’t reached out either.
But nothing is more important in this existence than love. Who do you love? Make time to speak and spend time with them.
I vowed to never let a job tell me I have ‘no more vacation time’. One thing about me – I’m ‘gon book the flight. I deserve rest, relaxation and time with my loved ones. My family and friends are more important to me than anything, & I deserve a vacation! Sooooo, I’ll be in Jamaica with the fam for two weeks ✌️.
6. Create a loose schedule or routine.
I know the social media girls are showing off their strict 4am routines – but that’s not you… and that’s ok! We gotta be honest with ourselves. If you’re struggling to stick to an early routine, then you’re not operating in your natural cadence – and that’s just dragging you further away from a soft life!
Rather than scheduling each day to the minute, create a loose routine for yourself. For me, I set a daily focus. There’s a lot of activities I want to explore and engage in, and I found myself really frustrated trying to schedule all of them in a day, while working a full time in-office job.
Try this – Make a list of the things you want to focus on. Sunday night, list out which task you’ll focus on each day. For example, on Monday, you focus on physical activity. Tuesdays – you write. And on Wednesdays, you practice the new language you’re learning. Our days
are often unpredictable, so work on these interests when the available time arises.
No rush. Slow and steady wins the race.
7. Spend the money sometimes.
So many people hold anxiety around money, really trying not to spend much at all. But I truly feel that this can in a way block more money from coming to you, because you’re operating from a place of fear.
Let that fear go. You will always be taken care of.
Buy the drink. Buy the bag. Go to dinner and run the check UP! Money always comes back. It’s in constant circulation. So, don’t stress your pretty head. Just spend the money and go ahead on!
8. Move at a slow pace.
There’s so much time to accomplish all that you want. Remember that although your body is finite, your soul is eternal. There’s no need to fit it all in a day, or a year, or a lifetime. Because, it will happen and you will accomplish it. All in divine timing.
Move slow. Again, there’s no rush.
And that’s it!
I hope these 9 tips help you live a life full of peace, rest and ease.
Love you! Catch you next time!