About the Author

Imani Bashir is a Black American Muslim woman whose work has centered identity, culture, and lifestyle. She has been featured in The New York Times, Travel & Leisure, Glamour Magazine, and others. Her purpose is to be an ambassador for creating content that shifts culture and provokes pertinent conversations.

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Reader Interactions


  1. A lesson that more people should take to heart. It don’t make you feel good then it is not for you! Thanks for your testimony

  2. I relate to this so much!!!! I wish I’d learned to power of nos and boundaries earlier in life. Or that my confidence & self-worth don’t need to be dependent on someone else’s approval. I AM ALLOWED TO DISAGREE.

    I used to be a YES person. Conflict made me anxious, and still does to an extent. I grew up learning to follow all strict rules, no matter how silly or fickle. I learned that my worth depended on how small I could make myself and how useful I could be to others. Making sure no one was mad at me – if they were then I failed. Success was that far off time in the future where “they” noticed me, my over-the-top hard work, & selfless lack of self-advocacy. “They” would see and reward. [Employers, friends, significant others, etc.]

    2 things happened ~ 2008 that that showed me I was naïve – the world doesn’t work this way at all. You have to speak on the things you believe in, and recognize that you might be the only person who can effectively advocate for yourself. Again in 2021, something happened that made me use my nos to protect myself & what’s most important in my life.

    I’m still learning to strategically use my nos more often. But, girl, it’s a powerful feeling when you learn to stop letting others violate your most important self-imposed boundaries.

    • SPEAK ON IT JANA! Whew. I am so thankful to see more of us taking up space, setting boundaries, and freeing ourselves. Thank you for sharing!

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