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We're Talking Self-Care and Singing with 'The Foxy Five'

Jabu Nadia Newman gets real about the importance of self-care and sisterhood.

Get in, beloved – or ‘loser’ if you’ve seen Mean Girls more times than you’d care to admit – we’re prioritising sleep, reclaiming our time, and getting serious about self-care.

Self-care doesn’t always look like LUSH bath bombs and too much chocolate – sometimes, it’s taking a break from social media or cleaning your space. More often than not, self-care takes hard work and in between skincare routines and shopping therapy, it’s a process of learning and unlearning.

Give yourself some TLC and cut out what’s causing anxiety. No flower blooms all year round, so why should you? Self-care isn’t about flourishing 24/7, but it is about nurturing the parts of yourself that need some love.

We all know binge-watching series is a go-to ritual to take a breather and escape for an hour (or five) and Foxy Five TV has taken a seat at the table as a series to watch to soothe the soul.

 

Jabu Newman

 

Director, producer, storyteller and kween of reimagining ’70s aesthetic Jabu Nadia Newman gives us the lowdown on how the web series cultivates sisterhood, self-care rituals and singing as belonging.

Jabu Newman

Foxy Five is an intersectional, safe space for women of colour to navigate our lived experiences against the backdrop of the patriarchy. Episode three unpacked mental health and anxiety – what compelled you to write about this topic?

It’s interesting because episode three really stood out because the majority of women of colour are going through the same thing. For me, the inspiration came in 2016 during the Fees Must Fall protest. There was a lot of talk about women who were struggling with the trauma of putting their bodies on the frontline during protests. The women started to make the decision to protect themselves first for their mental health, which was a controversial thing for a lot of people. So I was wanting to look at that and convey that when you see a strong person who’s leading everyone, when you see someone who seems to have it together, we don’t know what happens behind closed doors.

Chaze Matakala

 

What does self-care means to you and how does it influence your work?

Being able to write and trust myself. Knowing that what I have to say is valid. Self-care to me is protecting yourself from other people’s criticism and opinions of who you are. It’s about spending time alone, being in my own space and expressing myself without thinking where it’s going to end up or if it’s going to made public or for anybody’s consumption and just doing the work for myself.

 

Chaze Matakala

 

How does creating in itself act as a coping mechanism to deal with the oppression you personally face as a woman of colour? 

The moment of self-care that happens after self-expression is when other women relate to the content and tell me their stories. There’s affirmation, they give validation and they grapple with the content, even if it’s a critique. Seeing the online conversations between women of colour and how they engage with the content is its own form of self-care.

 

Chaze Matakala

Are there any self-care rituals you practice or is there a collective self-care space for you and your crew?

A big thing that came out on the set was the issue of how we are dealing with this really intense subject matter. We needed some type of decompression on the set and give everyone enough time to grapple with the subject matter. We became aware when we needed to take breaks and stop the whole day of shooting and began again at a later stage. On set we would sing Girl by Destiny’s Child, sing Beyoncé songs and struggle songs. Those are the moments of self-care where we took a break and regrouped were really necessary for us.

 

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