Issa Rae is one of my idols. She’s an incredibly talented individual whose show, Insecure, perfectly captures the experiences of young black adults, regardless of where they are in the world.
Now, we’re mere weeks away from the groundbreaking show’s final season. If that’s not enough, Rae recently married longtime partner Louis Diame. With so many changes happening in her life, one has to wonder how the NAACP Image Award winner manages it all.
Speaking to SELF as their new cover star, the 36-year-old delved into her self-care and wellness habits.
Issa Rae’s Lessons on Self-Care and Setting Boundaries
Andy Jackson. Wardrobe styling by Jason Rembert. Makeup by Joanna Simkin at The Wall Group. Hair by Felicia Leatherwood. Manicure by Naomi Gonzalez-Longstaff at ABTP. On Issa: Top and Jeans: Denimcractic. Earrings by MISHO. Rings by Jlani Jewels and Manluuny. Shoes by Sam Edelman.(SELF.COM)
Like many of us, Rae spent plenty of time indoors during the height of the COVID pandemic and it was during this time that Rae discovered a new form of self care.
Walking became part of her self-care routine, and she often incorporates listening to the news so that she’s still in touch with what’s happening in the world. Following these walks, Rae would then spend her time either journaling or spending her time in the dark, alone with her thoughts.
“It makes me feel like I’m not behind, which is a constant state and a constant source of anxiety,” she told SELF. “Waking up at four, I’m just like, ‘Not a lot of people are awake right now, at least on the West Coast,’ and that makes me feel like I have a window of time just for me. I think that’s my form of meditation because I don’t meditate.”
Journaling is a great form of meditation because it not only helps to relieve stress, but it’s also a great way to manage your thoughts. No wonder stars like Rae and Matthew McConaughey are such big fans of the hobby.
Relationships are the best part of us
Blue Zones are areas in the world inhabited by some of the world’s oldest, yet healthiest people. Now while there are various lessons that we can learn from these areas, one of the most prominent ones is the emphasis on relationships and community.
Rae admits to SELF that she considers herself a workaholic, yet she does prioritize cultivating her relationships, something that unfortunately gets harder to do as we age. So, what’s the best way to work through this? The Little actress revealed that she often sets calendar reminders to help her remember to check-in via text or phone call.
“It’s really disheartening to realize, ‘Oh, we have to really, really make an effort to see one another,’” she says of navigating friendships as we get older. Considering the global pandemic that we all just experienced, I don’t think we need to be told twice about the importance of maintaining our close bonds with people.
Set your boundaries
Admittedly, I was shocked when I read the news about Rae’s wedding, which many media outlets dubbed as a “secret wedding.”
However, the monikor is a tad bit unfair as Rae being a public figure does not give people the right to know everything about her personal life. In fact, setting boundaries which separates her personal life from her professional life is a great form of self-care.
Andy Jackson. Wardrobe styling by Jason Rembert. Makeup by Joanna Simkin at The Wall Group. Hair by Felicia Leatherwood. Manicure by Naomi Gonzalez-Longstaff at ABTP. On Issa: Jumpsuit by Christian Dior. Earrings by Yun Yun Sun. Ring by Jlani Jewels. (SELF.COM)
“There’s something really nice to have a piece of me that no one knows about or no one can talk about except for the people that are part of my life,” she says. “Self-care has been having a private piece that’s just for me.”
Now while you may not be as famous as Issa Rae, that doesn’t mean that you can’t set boundaries in your own life. Doing so is a great form of self-care as it helps to protect your mental health, prevent burnout as well as help you become more assertive.
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A great way to practice self-care is by monitoring your screen time. This is exactly why Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are calling on us to limit our screen time to 20 minutes.
MAIN IMAGE: Andy Jackson. Wardrobe styling by Jason Rembert. Makeup by Joanna Simkin at The Wall Group. Hair by Felicia Leatherwood. Manicure by Naomi Gonzalez-Longstaff at ABTP. On Issa: Top and Pant by CongTri. Earrings and Ring by Jlani Jewels. (SELF.COM)