People have accused me of being proud but I reply and say that I am not proud, I’m mildly arrogant!
Just kidding, of course, but those who I relate with frequently, even my closest enemies, would be inclined to say I am very self-confident; cocksure; supremely confident. This attitude stems from the fact that I have a natural belief in myself that constantly informs me of my self worth and abilities. In my opinion, one belief (and perhaps, the greatest belief) one should have is belief in oneself. Belief in one’s abilities. Belief in his/her desire and capabilities to ‘do’, to make, to create.
There are different definitions of the word proud (depends on the context within which you look at it) but there is one definition I came across that quite pleased me: Proud – very happy and pleased because of something you have done, something you know or are related to etc. Looking at this definition, I wonder why anyone would not be proud!
I think it is OK to be proud ‘in’ the knowledge of who you are. It’s true that when you are proud, you sometimes come across in an ostentatious way, as though you were superior to others, but I don’t think that is something to be worried about. Matter of fact, I think you should enjoy whatever attention such attitude brings to you. We are all equally created (I’ll explain that a bit below) but the moment you have doubts about yourself, you reduce your potential or your self worth and open yourself to the chance of not measuring up or meeting up; you become disadvantaged. Your disposition should not be that of one who is overtly superior or cantankerous, but should be of someone who has come to the understanding and appreciation of himself/herself and is eager or keen to share this understanding with the world.
It’s important that you come to the realisation of who you are, what your potentials are, what your weaknesses are and actively/consciously seek to positively impact the world or at least the society around you, with this knowledge of yourself.
You have the fundamentals of perfection inside of you: Life and all that it’s made up of. Life is what makes us equal because we have all been given it in the same measure, and we all came into it in the same way. Life is the ‘most perfect’ thing ever created, it’s a phenomenon, a force, an energy that exists by itself, for itself, limitless in itself, but limited by the body within which it exists. And that’s why growth is important. Development of the mind and body, because its only by so doing that you are able to experience the extent of zero-limitation, to do things that leave others amazed.
Most often times, we blame our limitations on what life has given to us. Silly excuse. Don’t wait for life to happen to you. Make it happen for you. Create your future. If you are a man, walk with your chest out and head held up high; if you are a woman, don’t walk with your chest out! but walk with your head held high. Be assertive. Stand tall and if you are not tall, stand as though you are. Stand proud. Get your stuff right, so you’ll have something to show, something to give.
Key question now is, how can one know himself/herself? I have a three stage solution for this:
Self realization: Understand what you are. Understand your body. Understand and verify the depth of your knowledge. Ask yourself why you do the things you do; what your fears really are. Seek feedback from others and take feedback received as is. Think about what it is you enjoy doing. What do you spend most of your time doing (that thing you spend your time on is called your passion)? Know what your strengths are, identify your weaknesses, your potentials, know your limitations (but don’t accept them without trying to conquer them).
Self actualization: Format your mind to be aligned with this knowledge of who you are. Explore the length and breadth of your potential to ensure that you are able to demonstrate it fully in whatever environment you are in. Discover what others with similar potential or passion have achieved and see where you stand. Yes, I’m saying you should compare yourself with others, but not to become envious of them but to learn from them. Embody your strengths; don’t just know about them, understand what it is you can do with them. Your limitations exist only because you allow them to.
Self expression: Live your life with this new found knowledge. Show the world who you are. Put your best foot forward all the time and in everything you do. Take your A-game everywhere you go and at any instance where you either have to say or do something, do it to your utmost ability. Don’t just exist and be a part of the crowd, Live! Make your own contribution to life.
I’ll tell you a story about myself growing up. When I was a kid (cause I’m still growing), I had what scientists would call disfluent speech. I stuttered. Anyone who hears me speak today would probably never believe that I did. Then, I’d think to myself and say, Kayode, when you sing, you don’t stutter, sometimes when you talk, you don’t stutter; so it means there is nothing ‘physically’ wrong with you. Also, I realized that those who were recognized by the teachers and those who were seen as successful in school were those who were able to answer questions in the classroom. I knew the answers, but I’d never offer to answer. Also, communication is required for social activity and so on the playground, I’d usually hesitate to speak and limit my socializing, because I didn’t want to stutter. But I’ve always wanted to be successful, so I decided that I had to find a way out. And I did. From then on, I realized that the power to change your life actually resides inside of you.
It is important that we embark on a lifetime journey of self development or improvement so that we are able to respond to the dynamic nature of life. With each day comes a new experience and you have to be able to overcome any challenge that comes your way. Also, through social interaction, you need to be able to attend to the needs of those who you relate with and impact them positively in some way. We all have potential within us. What are you doing with the potential that resides within you?
Learn, grow, develop yourself. Whatever it is you do, just make sure you do. Just. Do. It.
In life, you can do either of two things, find a way to get things done, or make excuses. What choice do you make when faced with a difficult situation? Make sure each day takes you closer to your goals. Sometimes what we need is a swift kick up our backside to get us moving, but whatever you do, just keep moving. Don’t just exist; Live!
If I tell you I am good, you’d say I’m boasting. If I tell you I’m no good , you’ll know I’m lying – Bruce Lee.