Everywhere I turn, I’m constantly looking for inspiration, even in the smallest forms and yesterday, while innocently reading, I stumbled across a potential source of inspiration I hope to experience soon:
As someone with a deep connection to magazines, yesterday while reading the April 2018 issue of Glamour Magazine, I stumbled across a short article with book suggestions specific to “Self-Help.” The concept of self-help books has always been of interest to me, so I paid close attention to their words.
Released during the February/March timeframe, “Heart Talk,” by poet/writer, Cleo Wade, is one that stands out to me and is now on my “to-read” list. In the article detailing her book, Glamour specifically mentions a poignant quote closely resonating with me:
“YOU are the only person who truly decides who YOU are. If you want to be a singer… think like a singer, say you ARE a singer, and of course, sing your song. We spend so much of our lives waiting for others to qualify us. Authorize YOURSELF. Step into your power right now; give yourself your own credentials, and you be the one who qualifies who YOU are.”
This quote rings true to me in more ways than way. More times than I care to admit or acknowledge, I’ve waited for others to qualify me – former bosses, friends, guys I’ve dated, even family, believing I needed them to TELL me who I was. As I grow older, I realize more and more this is the furthest from the truth. Nobody can tell us who we are – unless we allow them to. Even if someone attempts to tell us who we are, or how they believe we are, we don’t have to believe them. We don’t have to accept their supposed “definition” of us. For me, it takes effort to reclaim power over myself, though over the past ten years, it’s been a work in progress; most important things in life require some amount of effort and I recognize that. There have been many times where I’ve been told, I wasn’t worth what I was being paid in a job, or that I’d “be prettier if I wore my hair up,” or that I lacked the ability to navigate the concept of mathematics in school and was ridiculed for my struggles in the middle of the hallway. During this occasions, sometimes I’d crumble into a ball, crying myself to sleep in my room, punishing and isolating myself for being what I felt was a “misfit”. Though, as I grow older, my perspective shifts and I realize their thoughts only have power over me if I allow it; they are not facts, they are opinions.
Who am I? I’m Melissa, a woman on the brink of entering her 30’s in a couple weeks, a writer who yes, sometimes is too wordy or uses too many adjectives (what can I say, I love words), who wears her hair down because she likes to, wears heels and wedges because they boost my confidence and make me happy, and loves to help others because everybody can use a helping hand or listening ear; all of this – this is who I AM.
Therefore, my hope is that during the times when others attempt to tell you, whomever may be reading this who you are, or who they think you are, ask yourself, Who am I? Only you know that truth.