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By Eru Kobe Godwin May I ask a simple question? Who is your standard? Hmmm, let’s save the answers for the next episode. Come to think of it, no matter how hard you try, you can’t cry through someone else’s eyes. I have over heard lots of people say “I WISH I WAS LIKE HIM /HER.” Your identity is unique, one of a kind; in your whole life you can never have a replica. So no matter how much you think less of yourself, it’s still beautiful to be just who you are. Originality in ‘Word Web’ is defined as follows: The ability to think and act independently The quality of being new and original (not derived from something else). Originality gives you’re a true sense of belonging, it creates a safe haven for yourself and a high self-esteem and security. Question… Why should you be yourself? The answer is so simple, because everyone else is taken! It’s both a simple and an accurate answer. In the pursuit and process of being someone else you lose your true identity, becoming a shade/shadow of your true self. The important question is “why are we not ourselves?” For some of us it’s an environmental factor. We may have been raised in environments where it was dangerous to be who we are. Even as adults we may be working in environments that demand that we are other than ourselves in order to ensure job security. So we conclude that we have to be other than we are to get what we want like love, safety, income etc. We may believe that we aren’t good enough to be loved, guaranteed safety or approved of. We may have been told we are not worth treating well and sometimes we just create false standards we don’t match up to. We may become convinced that we are less than we should be. The parental factor also counts here; family is the closest institution in one’s life. We are either the success or the victims of our families. Imagine a child from the cradle till old age has never known the feel of “I LOVE YOU” from his or her parents. This goes a long ways affecting the child, because his/her emotion tank will be empty. How many African parents really express love to their children verbally? When we feel not good enough a lot of things happen to our lives? We end up putting things on hold, procrastination sets in, waiting for a perfect time when all things will become colourful good enough, but remember there are no perfect times in life. We spend so much time striving to feel that we’re good enough. Have I accomplished enough, am I good looking enough, is my car big/fast/exclusive enough, is my job title high enough, do I have enough awards/titles  to be good enough? Exhausting isn’t it? Self-worth and authenticity are intrinsically linked. The worth we have in our own eyes, a sense of worth not built on acquisition, job title, appearance, credentials is the only worth, worth living out of. How many of us realize that we have an intrinsic worth greater than anything on the outside? If we go through life with a sense of being deficient then we are motivated to acquire value – the things that others value in the world then become our aim in life. Life can be cloudy and dark at time. It can take many forms, we can lose everything we spent our whole lives accruing or we meet someone or a situation that places no value on our social status. A lot of life style is a façade. We try so hard to impress people but in the inside we struggle. Why struggle to fit in, when you know you can stand out? Clothes or jewelries don’t make a wonderful persona, it comes from within. When there’s a crack in the tea cup, it finally breaks open; our break down becomes our breakthrough. What we’ve been looking for is a way to feel good about whom we are, under all circumstance. We don’t always realise it at first since there’s so much attention  about  life on the fast lane, howling in pain and hanging onto fast disappearing life style’. Less is more; the same sun that melts the butter hardens the clay. You wake up and realize a lot about life is just a make believe, you been on the wrong lane for so long, you’ve have lost your identity, becoming someone else’s definition. The breakthrough cracks us wide open, excruciating at first but if we stay, refuse to take flight, we can transform. Now begins the re-acquainting ourselves with the ‘real’ us. There are many transformation techniques from journaling, meditation, prayer, walking, body work, self-re-discovery etc. We tend to gravitate towards one that works for us. Soon the pain subsides, loses its edge. We don’t feel so raw. Our lives may be in shambles around us but we can stand to be alive and increasingly we can stand to be ourselves. We live in a time of infinite help with wonderful teachers who can assist us in moving out of our debris; emotional, psychological and spiritual. Not being who you are may be a as a result of a wrong turn or step we took at the early stage of life, but it is never part of our being, it’s just a wrong believe or choice. Remember you are a beautiful innovation by God, uniquely made and chosen Remember you are special. Be inspired.

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This article was first published on 10th April 2012 and updated on May 10th, 2012 at 12:43 pm

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