Blog Purpose

Debunking the Glorification of The Soft Life 

how to live a soft life

A few months back, I wrote about the Soft Life Era. This trend states, that by rejecting the implications of Hustle Culture we are saying “yes” to a life of intent, harmony and joy.
Topics can easily get misconstrued when many opinions are actively being voiced. Although I am an advocate I think debunking the glorification of The Soft Life to be valuable in this regard.

There is a certain level of discernment required when consuming content on social media. A certain polarity or bias is broadcasted and as viewers, we tend to do one of either two things. Identify with and accept it as our truth or we reject it without giving it another glance. But isn’t there something to be said about a topic or trend that could teach us valuable insight, by opening our minds to another perspective we may not have considered?

The point I’m attempting to make is this…

You can disagree with something without dismissing the topic entirely. Similarly, you can agree with a topic whilst not resonating with every single one of its components.

In this sense, we are allowing space to grow by remaining receptive and being open-minded in the process.

The Soft Life Re-visited

You may have also come across the term Slow Living in social media pop culture. This lifestyle trend is similar to The Soft Life in that a life of less stress and more enjoyment is encouraged. Slowing down and tuning in by becoming intentional about where you place your efforts and allowing more space for those things you love to do. The aim isn’t in doing all the things but rather doing the right things at the right time and pace.

Mindfulness and self-love are integral as they build the foundation for a conscious lifestyle that is led with intention and worth. Prioritizing quality time with the relationships in your life vs. jam-packing your social calendar is also at the forefront.

The Nigerian influencer community receives credit for introducing the world to the soft life. The focus was on reducing stress whilst raising certain levels of comfort. How you define that is up to you as this lifestyle is purely personal just like life itself.

The momentum picked up on social media around 2021 as its content resonated with the masses by magnetizing a sense of relief and inner peace for anyone who stumbled upon it. As this article put it so perfectly, “[It is about balancing] one’s mental, emotional and physical health and seeking balance in all aspects of life.”

Slow Living is closely related to the soft life that it can be difficult to discern the difference. From what I have read and viewed on social media there is minimal discrepancy between the two, with the origins being the most obvious.

As mentioned above the soft life stems from the Nigerian influencer community around 2021 while slow living was birthed in the 1980s in arguably the most romantic city on earth, Rome Italy. What a beautiful synchronicity!

Living with Intention

There seems to be a generalized negative connotation that living a soft life means over-engaging with materialism and luxury while keeping work at a bare minimum. This would make any average working human roll their eyes at the sheer unattainability of it. I’m here to reassure you that this is a fallacy and not at all the philosophy behind the soft life.

Those leading a soft life, of course, enjoy materialistic things like shopping for new clothes, purchasing a trendy espresso maker or getting a regular manicure. But then again what person doesn’t enjoy these things? There is also nothing innately wrong with it either.

The discerning factor, however, behind this lifestyle movement is becoming in touch with your feminine energy. Something many of us living in a masculine-dominant world are lacking. The energetics of the feminine include things like nurturing self-love, regulating your nervous system, following your intuition or being hands-on creative.

May I add that the feminine lives in ALL of us regardless of gender.

So while it may seem that slow living is reserved for women, this again is a fallacy. The feminine energetics run the show here and is something all of us can benefit from. We are saying “yes” to living with intention, and connection and slowing down to smell the flowers.

The Beauty in Personal Growth

It’s not enough to preach to live with more intention and enjoyment the inner work needs to be done too. Personal growth work is pivotal in achieving the desired soft or slow life. Through this, we learn to heal wounds that have caused us to become complacent or recognizing our worth and living from it. We begin implementing boundaries that make certain we are growing in the right direction. From here, our life begins to bloom further.

Life inevitably hands us both positive and negative experiences and the soft life makes no exception. However, it’s through this personal growth work and setting of boundaries that we begin to reduce the negativity and learn how to overcome challenges. This in turn strengthens our self-love muscle.

Through such, the positive begins to appear more often and remains with us through greater cultivation. We no longer look for quick fixes or experiences that fill a void in us. We seek greater meaning and crave the intention of enjoying those things and relationships in our lives that feed us with joy, passion and gratitude!

The soft life whispers that the power to lead a life that wholeheartedly aligns with us lies within our reach.

Working The Soft Life

As humans, we are wired to work and perform labour-intensive tasks. But we’re also wired to slow down and enjoy the beauty life offers every single day with the people we share our lives with. There is much polarity happening in our world which is one of the causes of our dissatisfaction, stress and burn-out.

The Soft Life is not against working but rather doing meaningful work that coincides with one’s purpose and passion.

The Soft Life is here to inject more harmony into your life through balance and priorities. This lifestyle trend deserves a lot more credit than merely sipping rosé with your girls and going to pick flowers afterwards. Work is being done, but it is being done with swift diligence as opposed to rushing through to the end result. It’s quality vs. quantity and focusing on a growth mindset, not inadequacy, even in the face of setbacks.

Live Your Own Slow or Soft Life

Be Intentional

Intention lies at the centre of a soft life. When you lead with intention you are taking ownership and understanding that each decision you make leads to an inevitable outcome. Being intentional means you are living in a state of heightened awareness, and this is arguably where the sweet spots in life unfold from.

Take Your Time

How often do we move through the motions without even honouring the time we are lending out? It’s better to spend more time on something with intention than it is to waste smaller moments here and there. Those smaller moments add up over time. Taking your time also equates to living in the present moment.

For example, when it comes to going out for dinner with your family or friends, have you ever noticed how fast we consume our meal only to ask for the bill before we even get a chance to digest? Resist the race. Sit back, engage in a conversation, take breaks between your bites. Allow yourselves the time to lounge a moment longer.

Soft Life Work

Recently, I was listening to a podcast that mentioned it is greater to work on one large masterpiece than on many mediocre pieces. We spend a large majority of our lives working, giving us all the more reason to pursue a career path that aligns with us. This also prevents a potential burn-out and offers much more quality of life.

And on that note, it is never too early or late to pursue a career that aligns with you.

Live Your Passion

If life has gifted us with something grand, it’s our passion. From here we can draw on so many other things in life. Passion ignites curiosity which ripples into meaning which becomes the catalyst to our purpose.

I like to think of passion as the cherry on top of life.

The beauty when working on a project or hobby that is related to your passion is how ingrained we become with the process itself. Whereas with other things we fixate on the end result, passion takes us to a certain depth — a depth where our truest sense of self and talents live.

Learn Through Curiosity

There is great beauty in wonder. When we learn from a place of curiosity we begin igniting a greater sense of awareness and knowledge. Learning does not begin and end in a classroom setting. We are constantly learning throughout our lives, each experience we make offers us a lesson we can either adopt or reject depending on how it resonates.

The most popular and effective ways to remain curious and learn something new are by reading books or listening to podcasts.

Resting is Productive

There needs to be a ban on feeling guilty for resting. Being lazy is not resting. Resting is about re-charging your body and mind by shutting off anything that activates your nervous system. Think, afternoon naps, bubble baths, or lounging on a patio in the sun. Sorry to say but the best rest comes from tech-free time. Your notifications can wait and your mental health will thank you.

Invest in Your Wellness

The soft life is all about your health and wellness. It goes further than merely face masks and popping Vitamin C, although this is a good start. Be aware of what foods are nourishing your body or depleting its energy. Take quality supplements depending on what you need. Find your ideal workout routine, this is especially important for women with a hormonal cycle – during ovulation you’re better equipped for cardio or heavy lifting whereas in your luteal phase you want to engage in something calm like yoga. Research the ingredients in your cosmetics and know that if you cannot pronounce the word you probably should not be applying it on your skin.

Some of these things come with a price tag that is higher than others but then again, your health and wellness is worth the investment.

Savour All That You Can

Savouring has a certain seductive quality to it. When we savour we act in an almost vulnerable way to the experience at hand. The soft life, I would state, emphasizes savouring things in your life. Be it by the quality of your relationships, dancing to your favourite music or walking bare foot through a garden. Allow life to romanticize you.

Thanks for reading!
xo, Missy

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