Written by: BHL Staff – April 2nd 2020, 12:17pm pst
“Don’t get confused with what people say you are, with who you know you are.,” says Oprah Winfrey.
credit: An Oprah Book/MacMillan
In life, especially in this world of social media and hyper connectivity, we allow what people say about us to dictate who we truly are as individuals.Coworkers, bosses, aquaintances, friends, aunts, uncles, cousins, siblings and parents even, may tell you who they “think” you are or even who you “should” be.
At best, they mean well, but they might not fully understand you. At worst, they are jealous and deliberately trying to undermine your confidence. You serve as a mirror to their shortcomings as they themselves cannot live up to who you are. Therefore, they must tear you down and “put you back in your place”.
Just know, that’s the place that comforts THEM.
Sadly, too often, we listen to their words. We lament over what is being said about us. Many of us are influenced into becoming who others falsely believe we are or wish us to be. Either way, our dreams and growth are compromised and, in many cases, drastically stunted or halted. The result is almost always the same. We are left unfulfilled and sad, even self-medicating in some cases, to carry on under the weight of these toxic expectations.
Make your best effort to distance yourself from others who attempt to dictate the terms and parameters of who you are. Embrace those few who do not and who accept you in your totality.
If no one in your life sees you for who you really are, find new people that do. If you don’t know FULLY who you are yet, you’re not alone. Few, if any of us, do. Self-knowledge and self-actualization is the work of a lifetime.
Take the time to know yourself more completely through self help literature, self-help videos, or even therapy. This journey of discovery is a lifelong process and your energy is much better spent on that than lamenting over the opinions of others. There is nothing corny or cheesy about wanting to tap your own potential and lead as full and as wise of a life as you can.
At the end of the day, in your heart of hearts, you know enough about who you are to be your own foremost inner guide, through your dreams and your decisions. Just listen closely to that inner voice when it arises. Does it tell you what you can’t do? It might be an old recording of someone who didn’t reply know you. Does it kindly ask you to figure out how to do those things anyway? That might be the wisest you, the future you, inviting you to do and to be the best that you can be. It might be more than enough.
In these, the most challenging of times, Oprah’s advice will serve you more than ever.
credit: A Very Oprah Book
Though not affiliated with Oprah herself, Black Hollywood Live, as always, strongly recommends picking up her book: 365 Beautiful & Uplifting Quotes for Daily Reading for more of these gems. In fact, we’d recommend repeated reading of Oprah’s book for continual reminders of your boundless potential.
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