IDENTITY: WHO IS THE REAL YOU BEHIND THE YOU?

“Your identity lies in the root of your core values, not in your career or any position of authority you might hold. Your identity is your character revealed”. – Omoakhuana Anthonia

So, I went to the bank the other day to reactivate my dormant account and I was asked to present my valid Identity card. The bank asked to see the permanent of any of my valid I.D cards (National I.D, Voters card, International passport or Drivers’ License).

Now, I had none of the above except for my temporary National Identity Card as I was yet to collect the permanent one. The bank refused this and insisted on the permanent one. It didn’t matter that I was a former staff of the bank. Rules are rules and they cannot be changed for nobody.

At the time, I was pretty infuriated not because I didn’t know the rule for a fact, envisaging the stress I would have to go through to get the permanent I.D card was what was really getting me upset and I really needed the account reactivated ASAP.

At the end, I did get the permanent I.D card and it wasn’t as stressful as I anticipated. Holding the card in my hand filled me with a certain kind of joy….like I finally have an identity and belonged to a people; to a nation. I started looking forward to showing the card any chance I got….Lol. Yea, I really felt glad about it and was proud to have it.

The stress of reactivating my account made me man up to getting my permanent national I.D card which can serve more than one purpose and all to my benefit.

What am I trying to say in essence? 

This is a true statement of fact.

In life, no organisation or country hands you your self-identity…..not your family’s wealth, not your family’s name, not your husband/wife or kids,…. You carve your self-identity out for yourself. 

As I recently watched in the 2014 movie, Drumline: A New Beat, It was said, “You have to know who you were to understand who you are. With identity comes purpose and with purpose, comes change”.

So, the question is, WHAT IS YOUR IDENTITY? 

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B.R Ambedkar said, “Unlike a drop of water which loses its identity when it joins the ocean, Man does not lose his being in the society in which he lives. Man’s life is independent. He is born not for the development of the society alone but for the development of his self.”

So long as we try to be like another person, we would never be our true selves…we would never be an original. We would always be fake. Someone said, “Perhaps the best brand you can wear is your own identity”.

I beg to make a teeny-weeny change in this quote….there is no “perhaps” in this. Your identity is most definitely the best brand you can wear. You know why? Because your identity is original. 

YOUR IDENTITY IS UNIQUE.

“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken”, so beautifully put by Oscar Wilde

You are smashing great. That you are in a particular situation now or that your life seems to be going downhill, doesn’t mean you are a screw up. You look at other people and so much want to be like them….heck! you want to actually be them. How sad is this? Giving up your original self to be someone else.

If that person you so admire or envy didn’t make the best of themselves, would you admire them or even aim to be like them? Why not take a cue from who they are, learn from them and strive to make the best of your own self so you can be an inspiration to other people?

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You are just as amazing and great as the person you admire. The only difference is that person chose to make so much out of his/herself while you sit back and wait for the magic to happen.

You are not willing to work on yourself but just expect to be suddenly great and awesome.

“Gold is not gold until it passes through fire”, so the saying goes, right? Well, that is actually how life rolls too. You face so many challenges and crap and you suddenly can’t take anymore, right? You think giving up makes it better, yea? How wrong you are.

You are not a loser. That is not your identity. Believe me.

“Never forget what you are, for surely the world will not. Make it your strength. Then it can never be your weakness. Armour yourself in it, and it will never be used to hurt you.” ― George R.R. Martin

No matter what anyone says to put you down, just keep being you. This is one aged-long secret that has been known to put off haters, bullies and back-biters.

They taunt you out of their own insecurities but you have to be the bigger person in the picture and teach them a lesson or two in the art of true living. From your life, they get to understand how low they are for trying to mess with you while you ignore them and keep living as though they are not there.

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“Never be bullied into silence. Never allow yourself to be made a victim. Accept no one’s definition of your life, but define yourself.” ― Harvey Fierstein

How do you teach the world that you are a lot more than they see you? By getting your acts together and bringing your A-game always.

Talent is good; heck it is super amazing but it is not all that is required to be a success. In actual fact, talent isn’t enough. You want to get out there? You think the competition out there is soooooo much but still want to stand out from the outstanding crowd? Then you need to do more…….you need to be more…

Work ethics, drive, team work, hard work, smart work….are all part of the success package. These are basically the beginning, middle and the finish of becoming great.

Success is not all about, “me, me, me”. It is about “us”….”TEAM US”. 

Lonely is never a pretty place to be; togetherness is more like it. Stepping on others to get ahead is so not it because that is not success calling your name at the peak of the ladder. It is EGO and watch it, else you may just miss a step and fall back to ground zero.

“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” ― Mahatma Gandhi

You can’t enjoy success or triumph alone. It is something you share with family and friends…..note this.

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It takes absolute courage to discover who you are….. It takes courage to see past all the hurdles, hardships and obstacles and still allow the very best of you come forth.

A great life is never handed to you on a platter. You got to create it. You already got the mix so now, make the batter. 

You got nothing to prove to no one other than yourself because you are your only competition. Forget what others may think or say of you, after all, they have a right to their own opinions, right? Your identity isn’t placed on people’s validation of you. It is more what you think of yourself and how you see yourself.

“The price you will offer yourself to the world, is how much they will buy you.” ― Lailah Gifty Akita

And you are priceless, remember? Just live and be the real you already. It’s high time you allowed that part of you out into the world. Don’t let ego ruin you. You want to know something? Ego is squashed where humility, simplicity and all other virtues are present.

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Ego is only about making loud empty noises whereas humility is filled with so much quiet, grace, elegance, class and beauty. It echoes simplicity, happiness, joy, triumph, victory, screaming so louuuuuddddd that you can’t even hear a squeak ego makes.

C’mon beautiful people, you got this and you can do this. You and only you have all it takes to make that great life for yourself….not your parents, spouses, kids, colleagues, bosses or any of that but YOU.

Where you come from, your background, your family’s story/history, your parent’s story……none of these are your truth. YOU ARE WHAT YOU SAY YOUR TRUTH IS….YOUR IDENTITY IS WHAT YOU SHOW TO THE WORLD.

“Staying true to who you are is essential to anyone’s success.” ― Lindsey Rietzsch.

You define yourself and your status and let the world know that you are a beautiful and positive force that cannot be messed with. You are unbreakable, you know that, right?

No matter what life brings to your table, always remember as A.A.Milne did say….(I cannot stop reiterating these words because this is the beginning of your self-discovery)….. “You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think”.

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So you want to get ahead in life? You want to be the very best of who you are? Then first make your peace with your past and then cut your ties with the past so they don’t come back to mess with you.

Look your demons squarely in the face…..do not be intimidated by fear. Give that demon a name and look it in the face….Is it inferiority complex? Is it anger? Is it frowning? Is it unforgiveness? Whatever it is, call out its name as that is your first step to victory.

Remember, as I mentioned earlier, “You have to know who you were to understand who you are…..”.

“You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ You must do the thing you think you cannot do.” ― Eleanor Roosevelt

This is your moment to reveal your true identity to the world because NOW is the moment we have….NOW is the moment we own. You have to live in the now before you can live for tomorrow. “One step at a time”…..isn’t that how it is said?

So get off your behind and start living already.

NO ONE can break you…..No one can make you but YOU. Let the world say what they want, you just keep being original and your truest self will soar into lime light and trust me, no one can take that spot away from you except you hand it over to them.

You are AMAZING. You are SPECTACULAR. You are BEAUTIFUL. You are ORIGINAL. You are UNIQUE…..and so very deserving of love, respect and happiness. Don’t let no one fool you or deceive you into believing otherwise. 

Take it from me, YOU ARE SPLENDID and it is high time you started believing that. 

You are no screw up, no matter what your past has been. YOU ARE MOST DEFINITELY NOT A SCREW UP. So, get off your behind and put your life back together but this time, with an identity.

Your identity is not tied to your status at birth or how you grew up. It is not tied to your father’s known name. Go out there and make a name for yourself. The I.D card you wear in life is not worn around your neck or clipped to your clothing in a plastic card holder. 

Don’t think for a second that your identity is wrapped in your career or whatever position of authority you hold in life. It lies in who you really are. Your identity lies in the root of your core values. What do you stand for?

Who we are at our core is a series of action. Whatever action we take at any point in our lives is at that moment, who we are.

St John Paul II said, “Do not be afraid to be holy! Have the courage and humility to present yourselves to the world determined to be holy since full, true freedom is born from holiness”.

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So what values define you? Where you are coming from is one thing, discovering yourself and the direction you are headed is a different ball game altogether.

As each day passes, we discover more about who we really are. All the trials, hardships life brings our way is not to spite or hurt us, it is always to teach us more and more about the inner strength we possess. 

“To know who I am is a species of knowing where I stand. My identity is defined by the commitments and identifications which provide the frame or horizon within which I can try to determine from case to case what is good, or valuable, or what ought to be done, or what I endorse or oppose. In other words, it is the horizon within which I am capable of taking a stand.” ― Charles Taylor

This goes to show that even life believes in us hence it pushes us to our limit not to break us but to show us that we are limitless. We are bigger, stronger and smarter. We can handle anything.

That is our identity!

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So stop blaming others or bitching about how unfair or crappy life is. It turned out that way for you because you made it to. It is your responsibility to show the world the truth about the real you and not what it assumed or speculated you to be.

YOU ARE BRAVE. YOU ARE STRONG. YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL. YOU ARE CONFIDENT. YOU CAN ACHIEVE WHATEVER DREAMS OR GOALS YOU HAVE. YOU ARE A VICTOR. YOU ARE A SURVIVOR.

Now this is the truth about you, my dear one. It’s up to you to make it yours. I can’t very well finish this write-up without concluding with this quote:

“Over the years, I have come to realize that the greatest trap in our life is not success, popularity, or power, but self-rejection. Success, popularity, and power can indeed present a great temptation, but their seductive quality often comes from the way they are part of the much larger temptation to self-rejection. When we have come to believe in the voices that call us worthless and unlovable, then success, popularity, and power are easily perceived as attractive solutions. The real trap, however, is self-rejection. As soon as someone accuses me or criticizes me, as soon as I am rejected, left alone, or abandoned, I find myself thinking, “Well, that proves once again that I am a nobody.” … [My dark side says,] I am no good… I deserve to be pushed aside, forgotten, rejected, and abandoned. Self-rejection is the greatest enemy of the spiritual life because it contradicts the sacred voice that calls us the “Beloved.” Being the Beloved constitutes the core truth of our existence.”
Henri J.M. Nouwen

Thank you so much for reading this article. Were you inspired in anyway? Did you see the need to change the identity of who you are now to who you are truly meant to be?

I really cannot wait to read your comments and contributions. Please be sure to leave them in the box below.

Remain, Dashing, Dazzling and Daring as always.

 

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