You know how sometimes you’re crazy about something—you think it’s the best thing ever (after Phyno, of course), but someone else sees it as average? The reverse may be the case, where you think ‘mehhh’ of something someone else thinks the world of. The Mercedes G-Wagen, for instance—heavy-duty luxury vehicle with specs fit for a king. Some people would rob a bank to acquire it, but guess what? I hate that car! I think it’s so ugly.
In contrast, I love, love, loooove Indian cuisine. From the flavours of the dishes to the aroma of curry, I think it’s just to die for. I don’t believe anyone cooks basmati rice like they do. Please don’t even get me started on naan bread.
However, as much as I love Indian food, I know it’s an acquired taste for a number of people.
Now, imagine the G-Wagen and Indian cuisine are human beings. Imagine they are you and me. That I’m not so keen on the G-Wagen doesn’t mean a different person wouldn’t go gaga over it. My lack of appreciation of the car will never take away the love certain people have for it; the same way someone else’s dislike for Indian cuisine doesn’t make it any less appealing to me. I love it just the way it is, strong flavours and all.
Have you ever found yourself wanting someone’s love, attention or friendship to the point where you feel the need to pretend to be something you’re not? Well…stop. No matter how amazing you are, not everyone will like or accept you…and guess what? That’s OK. I’m in no doubt about how great a person I am, but I also understand that for certain people, I won’t be…enough. No matter what I do. I may not be funny enough, or driven enough, or spiritual enough or fashionable enough. However, to someone else, without even trying so hard, I’m nothing short of the moon and stars. I’m everything a group of people have been longing to have in their lives.
You are exactly what someone is looking for. I’m not just referring to romantic dalliances. You are exactly the kind of person someone needs as a friend. Your quirks and idiosyncrasies are perfect for them. You attempting to change who you are to be accepted by a few, usually insignificant people, is a huge disservice to those who actually need you as you are. Be yourself because that’s who you’re best at being.
If at all you have to change, let it instead, be to improve your character and to become a ‘2.0’ version of yourself. Become more hardworking, more patient and friendly, kinder and more personable. Your aspirations to become a ‘better you’ should never be to feel validated by another person or like you matter to them. Your self-development, ideally, shouldn’t be to make you worthy of someone else’s love and acceptance. That’s just a disaster waiting to happen. Well, except you’re on their payroll, then by all means develop away. (I kid, I kid. The Igbo in me popped out for a brief moment). You should build up yourself because your personal improvement adds value to your own life and to the lives of those around you.
Be yourself always. Why bleach your skin or wear your hair in a way you find uncomfortable, simply to get the attention of a guy? Why do you need to tone down your laugh, or pretend to love basketball when, in fact, you love to watch the news? Why dress in a way you’re not used to, just to fit in with a particular crowd who aren’t even adding a thing to your life? If you don’t like politics, you don’t like politics. If you prefer Game of Thrones to Empire, guess what? That’s OK. We must never change who we are for anyone’s approval because us humans are terribly fickle and someone’s rejection of you has nothing to do with you as a person (except you have an ugly attitude, then in that case, it probably has everything to do with you). It doesn’t mean you’re not beautiful or rich or interesting enough. It simply means you’re not what they’re looking for. And that’s OK. That’s absolutely OK. Just keep being yourself, because you’re exactly what someone is praying for. And it would be such a shame to deprive them of your awesomeness.