This is the very first blog for this page, and since the blog was created for you, It’s only fitting for the very first blog to be about ‘you’.
First of all though, I’d like to introduce you to Amanda because this little boring clip of her story is going to be important to the topic of interest for today (which is you of course *winks*).
Well, on one cool night, Amanda had just had an eventful day and was just about ready to go home. She got up from her seat and went to look for the people she had come with for the event they attended that night. Upon passing a group of people (seated), they called out to her. She turned around to say that she wasn’t a waitress thinking that they had probably wanted something and mistook her for one of the workers there. However, they said they knew she wasn’t a waitress. A little suprised by that, she started wondering to herself why they would call her. Just about that time, a conversation that was going to last the rest of the night was struck up by a simple “What is your name?”.
I’m sure you’re probably asking yourself, ‘So …um…. What does this uneventful story have to do with me ? And it’s not even a proper story’. In my defense though, I told you it was going to be boring and that it was a clip of a story. Anyway, the reason for the story is to emphasise that, most times when people ask us to introduce ourselves, the very first thing we say is ‘My name is…’ and then we go on to say where we are from and probably where we work. Whilst we say these things though, we might not be truly introducing ourselves. Now, you’re probably wondering what the heck I’m talking about.
What I’m basically trying to say is, when someone asks you to introduce yourself, they’re simply telling you ‘give me a taste of you’ *no pun intended* they are saying ‘who are you?’ and sometimes we can’t even truly answer ourselves when we ask ourselves that question, sometimes we can and believe them, and other times, we say the right words, but do not truly believe them or, rather, we have doubts. Try it. Ask yourself ‘Who am I?’ and answer it out loud.
The point here is, if you do not know who you are or if you have doubts about who you are, then, who have you been showing to the World? To answer that question, it’s either one of four things;
- You’ve been showing the world a confused version of your true self
- You’ve been showing the world a false self
- You’ve been hiding who you truly are, and haven’t really shown the world anything.
- A combination of a few or all of the above.
Personally, when someone interacts with me or if I ask someone to talk about themselves, I get to know more about them by their body language and the kind of words they use, but not the rote ‘My name is…’, ‘I have so and so…’, ‘I work at….’ etc. Because later on, I may or may not remember their name or where they work but what I’ll remember is or what I’ll tell someone if they ask me about that person is; “I met one beautiful lady today” or “There was this guy I met this week, He was so bold..”, “She was very pliable”, “He was jovial person”, “She has a strong personality” …
Take for example, when someone goes to apply for a job, the interviewer doesn’t just listen to what the person is saying, but pays more attention to how they are saying what they are saying and even more importantly, what they might not be saying. During a job application, if there are three applicants of equal qualifications that give the exact same answers to the same question, when the employer wants to make a choice out of the three, He/She is not going to look at if the names of the applicants sound right to work with the company. He/She is going to look for the unsaid. They are going to look at their personalities, their qualities, He/ She is going to try to decipher the true people these applicants are.
So, when I asked you to ask yourself that question and when you replied, did you have this niggling doubt in your mind about your answer? or did you even have an answer?
If you experienced the first, you have to thrash out the doubt. One way to do that is to say who you are out loud multiple times a day, and gain confidence from it. Another way would be to drown out that negative voice in your head and surround yourself with positive people because that voice of doubt in your head might not even be your voice in the first place.
If you didn’t have an answer, then your assignment is not finding yourself, but becoming who you would like to be. I can’t tell you to find yourself because that would mean you lost yourself and would just throw you into more confusion. Life evolves in different stages of emotions, confusion being one of them. And life has to do with growing and growing to do with letting go of some characters and adopting others, learning and unlearning, thus you are prone to lose a character that you might have falsely thought was you, I said falsely because a character is not and does not make up the whole you. Man is more complex than that. But like I said, all these stages are part of life. Life is about discovering who you want to be or are meant to be and moving forward and becoming it, not finding out who you were. Life is progressive.
“He allowed himself to be swayed by his conviction that human beings are not born once and for all on the day their mothers give birth to them, but that life obliges them over and over again to give birth to themselves.”
― Gabriel García Márquez,
Life is a process. So, just ask yourself ‘who do I want to be?’ and work on being it, work on molding you to take form.
Anyway, going back to our story, Amanda told them about herself and introduced herself, she showed them who she was. She didn’t say ‘I’m funny’ but showed them she was funny. She didn’t say ‘I am passionate’ but showed them she was passionate. Sometimes we know who we are, we could even give an epistle to attest to it. we say it but don’t show it. And the downside to that is that people would see you as a bluff. People would see you as a liar or a wannabe. And then your accomplishment would be, (giving them) a false definition of you.
You truly introduce yourself by showing people who you are, not telling them who you are, or what you are.
After the conversation with the group (a jazz band), Amanda found the people she came with or more rightly put, they found her conversation-deep with the band, and headed out. Now the event they had attended was a graduation event and, there was an after-party. Amanda was not a party goer herself, but not to be rude, decided to honour the invitation of her friend (who was also one of the graduates) even if just to pop in and pop out.
Whilst at the venue for the after-party, Amanda got talking with someone. To cut the long story short, since you might not be enjoying it anyway *raised eyebrow*, the person she was conversing with, let’s call her G, made a remark that she was forgettable (although she said she meant it in a non self-deprecating way) . Amanda jumped to say that G shouldn’t say such but was intercepted by another person at the table who replied to G with; ‘your being forgettable all depends on how you portray yourself to people, and pretty much how you impact people’.
Not showing the world who you are makes you forgettable. Not making an impact makes you forgettable. Portraying yourself as someone without power, someone without a stand, some little scared quiet mouse, someone without a definite say, someone that always has nothing to say, someone who is too scared to do anything or be anything, someone who walks around with their backs hunched and someone who hangs their head low, someone who is plain, all make you forgettable. Portraying yourself as someone who is sad all the time, every time, all day, every day, makes you forgettable, because people don’t want to remember or rather, try not to remember the sad or depressing things in life.
Being part of the background noise makes you forgettable. Being dull makes you forgettable.
There’ll probably be a myriad of other things that makes someone forgettable, but the point is, you are not meant to be forgettable because everyone is made different from the other so your uniqueness is meant to be appreciated. However, if you hide who you are behind another person or walk in the shadow of someone else, people appreciate the original person’s uniqueness and forget the photocopy, because, why remember the two when one is like the other? Just remember the One.
Introduce yourself to the World, Show them who you are, make an impact.
DO NOT BELIEVE the negative voices in your head. Drown them out. Start your day by saying something positive to yourself. Have a good-vibe song in your head that keeps on playing throughout the day.
Smile. Laugh. Dance. Embrace your complexities and drown out your fears.
“Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else’s opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.”
― Oscar Wilde
“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
Introduce yourself to the world starting with you.
- Image: found on playbuzz.com