Seven Life Gems Inspired by Salt-N-Pepa

Many of us 80’s babies were excited to see Lifetime’s heavily promoted Salt-N-Pepa biopic.

Don’t worry, no spoilers are ahead. I’ll just say that the movie featured many of their major hits and highlighted their personal and professional trials and triumphs.

Although I was entertained by the nostalgic elements of the movie (the music—of course, the colorful wardrobes, trendsetting hair, and oversized bling), I most appreciated seeing the evolution of these two women as they overcame challenges related to body image, sexuality, gender, artistic expression, motherhood, intimate relationships, and sisterhood.

Below are seven life gems I gleaned from the story of Cheryl James and Sandra Denton, the women of Salt-N-Pepa.

  1. Pursue your passions. It has often been said that we are most successful and happy when we do what we enjoy. Chase passion over paper. With consistent dedication, your efforts will yield a rich harvest.
  2. Do your own research. Way too many people get played simply because they lack the knowledge and understanding they need. Make sure you do your own due diligence and consult with someone ethical, knowledgeable, and who is prioritizing your best interests.
  3. Recognize your limits. We cannot and should not try to be all things all the time to everyone. Nor can we do all things, all the time or even some of the time. Be honest with yourself and recognize when it is time to fall back, pump the breaks, or reroute altogether. Self-care is about more than massages and bubble baths. Self-care also sometimes requires you to say “no” or “this isn’t for me”.
  4. Respect others’ limits. There have been popular posts circulating on social media promoting the expectation that others should be able and willing to show up for you whenever and however you need them to or else they are a “fake” friend. This is unrealistic and untrue. Everyone is facing some battle; many are unseen and unheard. Sometimes others may not be able to support you the way you would prefer and/or they may not even know you need them. Which brings me to the next life gem.
  5. Ask for help. I haven’t seen evidence that mind readers exist. No one can help you if you don’t specifically tell them what you need from them in particular. You gotta ask. Explicitly.
  6. Hold yourself accountable. When someone offers support and assistance, follow through. People can offer resources but only you can do the work. Only you can do the honest self-assessment. Only you know how hard you’re working to climb the hurdles. Only you know what’s holding you back. Keep it real with yourself first and always.
  7. Celebrate your victories no matter how minor it may seem. Keep acknowledging and rooting for yourself. You need to hype yourself up so good that it would take the good Lord to make you question your positive affirmations. Remember, you reflect to the world what you believe and see in yourself.


What other life gems did you gain from the movie? How can you incorporate some or all of these in your life?




Celebrities, Movies

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