South Asians for Black Lives is a program of Malikah started by a collective of South Asian women in California. The program is aimed at calling in our South Asian community to dismantle anti-Blackness, build antiracist coalitions and to inspire folks to join the abolitionist movement. We are learning as a collective to do this through a transformative justice and healing approach. Moreover, we ground ourselves in a BIPOC feminist ethics.
Now, more than ever, Asian women are proving to the world that they can be anything that they want to be and are inspiring a new generation of Asian girls to do the same. Growing up, I found that inspiration through comedian, entertainer, and actress Lilly Singh on her YouTube channel IISuperwomanII. After stumbling across her hilarious videos in middle school, I connected with her honesty about being a brown, Asian woman and saw her as someone I could look up to. Whenever I felt like I needed motivation, I searched up her “My Secrets to Success” or “5 Reasons You WILL Succeed” videos. When I struggled to put a smile on my face, I found “How to Stay Positive.” To me, she was more than a simple Youtube personality, but a real-life superhero with skin and hair like mine to flow flawlessly in the wind instead of a cape.
Lilly Singh has achieved so much and is bound to do so much more. She is the author of a #1 New York Times Best Seller (HOW TO BE A BAWSE: A Guide to Conquering Life), has her own clothing line, and will the Late Night’s first female host this coming September. Added to that, she founded a campaign called #GirlLove that encourages women empowering other women and on putting an end to girl-on-girl hate. She also expanded this campaign by partnering with MetoWe to help girls in Africa get an education to spread the #GirlLove to girls around the world.
What I admire most about Lilly Singh isn’t that she created a successful YouTube channel, or that she has 8.7 million followers on Instagram, or even that she’ll be hosting “A Little Late with Lilly Singh.” What I admire most about her is that she founded her projects based on spreading light and positivity. I admire that once she built up her platform, she didn’t just use it for her own benefit. “When she broke through the glass ceiling, she didn’t take a moment to stargaze but worked on building ladders so that others could enjoy the view with her. She believes that “there is enough room in this world for all of us to succeed. We all have what it takes to be the best version of ourselves” and does her best to help whomever she can. She never just believes in something. Like a strong entrepreneur, she believes in it, and doesn’t wait to take action because “procrastination is a hustlers worst enemy.” However, like a strong woman, she didn’t just do it for the money or fame.
Lilly Singh teaches girls all over the word that entrepreneurship stems from defining a solution to an issue in society, investing your time and talents into your solution, building from that solution to better solve the problem and fix related ones, and repeating the process until there’s nothing left to fix. She also teaches to market your ideas and beliefs to select groups, but to share them with the world, understanding that “ if you want to be taken seriously, you need to show people who you are, and then keep showing them.”
What I’ve learned from Lilly Singh and her video “5 Real Ways to Get Your Work Done,” is that when you see an issue, you start working to create something to help solve it, the same way the amazing editors here at Overachiever Magazine and at the Filipina Feminists do to fight sexism and racial discrimination. Being an entrepreneur means that if you truly believe in it, you’ll work for it and that if you really want to be it, you’ll prioritize investing in it.
Lilly Singh has taught me how to be Bawse in whatever I chose to pursue. To work hard because even though my muscles will hurt when I collapse in my bed, in the morning I will feel better than ever. She’s taught me that being Bawse also means helping others climb the ladder to becoming Bawse, too, so that they can experience that same glorious feeling of breaking through the glass ceiling and being able to see the rainbow. She’s taught me that I don’t have to be a doctor or a lawyer to be successful. Nor do I have to feign being a “professional.” I have a so much unlocked potential in me to use to create my success, to achieve what I am meant to achieve and to be my own Bawse. To close with her inspiring words, everything that Lilly Singh has created teaches that “You’re standing in the middle of a blank piece of paper. Unleash your inner architect and design your path to success. Get wild, be creative, and don’t get distracted by the flow of traffic. Traffic sucks anyway.”
Aria Mallare is an avid reader, writer, and creative who wishes books were printed in glow-in-the-dark ink so that she could read at any time and for it to be acceptable to doodle on homework. In another dimension she’s a superhero, but in the real world she hopes to produce children’s TV shows.
Overachiever Magazine was started by Rehana Paul in October of 2018 to give a platform to all Asian women, non-binary people, and other gender minorities.
Our name is poking fun at the stereotype that all Asians are overachievers, especially Asian women, non-binary people, and other gender minorities. It’s also in recognition of all of us who have had no choice but to be overachievers: managing societal expectations, family obligations, and educational opportunities, all while fighting the patriarchy.
We have grown since then, putting out bimonthly issues (we are contributor powered: apply to write for our next one!), and weekly reviews of culture, and news that is important to us.
You can find announcements, more news, and get to know our staff on social media: give us a follow, and learn how you can get involved today!
We do not claim to speak for all Asian women, non-binary people, and other gender minorities. We are just here to give them a place to speak for themselves.