The Fascinating Ride to Self-Realignment
The values I decided to intensify and live by this past year
I had started telling you the tale of my genesis to self-realignment. It was a bit of a lengthy post, which I hope you managed to read through. How I got to recognize the concept of realignment, because it was quite a foreign term for me too when I started doing it deliberately; in the sense that I was used to using it in a corporate context rather than personal context. It so happens that last month my local church had been focusing heavily on the topic of covenant realignment. What are the odds? I have never felt a divine connection such as this.
So here I am in formation, asking myself relevant questions like what makes me the person that you or anyone for that matter, would want to be associated with or believe in or in what I have to offer, whether in a product or service, or even as a person to look up to. I have a friend who says that, “people buy into people not things.” It’s very easy to think that people buy into things, because from the surface, that’s how it looks. You know things are nice to have and when you have them there’s this short-lived sense of fulfillment. Before you know it you’re looking at another thing and you now want that newer thing. And the thing that you had and that you thought was the IT thing for you will take a back seat and you start focusing on the new thing. And things in this case can take many forms – as long as it’s not living, it’s a thing.
When you scratch beneath the surface, you understand that things expire; they’re trashed and then forgotten. But people, people don’t. When you have an impact on someone, you don’t expire, you’re not trashed and you’re most certainly not forgotten. That’s why years down the lane; someone will remember you for playing a certain role in their life – whether it was personal or even professional – because the role you played played a significant part in making them who they are today. Back to my story, on making that deliberate choice to realign myself to that greater purpose; there are three values I decided to intensify and live by this past year that have made me see the truth in my friends statement. The reason I believe that statement stuck with me, is because it was connected to my purpose, which involves people.
Be Authentic and Open Minded
If there’s one thing that is still difficult to find today, is people who are true to themselves and true to others. People who are genuine and transparent in their dealings, people who do things without any malicious intent (or because they want to derive a greater benefit or for the promise that there be more in it for them). People who do things for you (or with you), because they want to help you solve a problem or because they want to put out the best out there and get the best in return.
With that, I told myself that I will strive to authentic in my undertakings and deliberately so. I am an authentic person, yeah, but it’s so easy to be swayed off that wagon when you engage with people who are visibly not authentic. I usually say I’m somewhat a gullible person most of the times when it comes to judgment of character; my intuition takes some time to check in because my empathy takes precedence. So if someone acts all nice, I’ll believe they’re genuinely nice.
I have been bitten while at it to be honest, and not just once, maybe it’s because I wasn’t shy the 2nd time. Now I am, and very critical too. I have done jobs where I put 100% but when it came to pay day, the same effort didn’t reflect in the payment, if anything it was 0% because I wasn’t paid. Naïve me thought that these persons I was dealing with was trustworthy because I had interacted with them a couple of times when discussing the work at hand and saw how desperately they need it done and delivered. Naïve me, empathized and once we had locked in the scope of work and the costs, I devotedly did my bit and was in constant communication with them to ensure that they didn’t miss their deadline. Only for them to do what they needed to do, and once that was over and ticked off their ‘to do’ list, I was history. A bitter history as I also cancelled them completely after I understood the game that was being played. Other times, I have done some work with people and they get paid for it but they didn’t extend the favor.
I have formed some relationships as well where I’ve come to realize when it’s a little too late that this person(s) weren’t who they purported to be and having to go through the process of discovery, heart break and healing. Then literally pinching my ear and reminding self that I should be smarter next time not to fall into the same trap. I figured that I need to nurture my relationships, have realistic expectations of them and create those boundaries – let my people know what I stand for, because that sets ground on whether what we have going will work out or not. Also have an open mind so that I can accommodate their standpoint as well.
I know many of us have been in this kind of situation. Some so fresh that it still hurts, but you know what, pick yourself up and remember at least you delivered your end of the bargain. You were authentic. Let the person who didn’t deliver their end of the bargain know that and let it eat them up, because it will. It might be the hard way, where you have to be the bigger person, but you learn to respect other people’s effort, because you have had yours taken for granted. You learn to stay true even when your truth has been compromised.
Narrow Down Your Scope
In a world full of many possibilities, you need to narrow down your scope. You need to understand that you can’t be everywhere at the same time and you cannot do a million things at one go, in as much as we’re tempted to do so. Shout out to all those people who have more than 20 tabs open right now, but you’re currently using one, because that’s the one you need. The rest are just a distraction but you hold on to them. Am I preaching to the choir? This has been one of my greatest weaknesses, since we’re being honest here.
A few years after I had started blogging, I was really confused as to what kind of blogger I wanted to be, but I continued to blog because I loved doing it. There were many niche bloggers then just like there are today i.e. fashion, food, travel, tech, hair, relationships, you name it. I was so torn because I wanted to write on everything regarding my life experiences, which technically cut across all these categories. This made me feel like I didn’t belong anywhere in the blogosphere really, because when someone asked, “so what do you write about?” and I go like, “life…!” It didn’t feel definitive enough. This played a number on my confidence in my craft too, especially when I had to explain what this “life…!” meant.
Fast forward to this time last year, I decided to take it a notch higher and identify my vision for this blogging thing that I enjoy doing so much. Like I had mentioned earlier, I generally didn’t want continue doing things without an end in mind and for me, this felt like a lingering dark cloud. And the only way to have it go away was to figure it out. This is how I came to the realization that I am a lifist, and I write about my life lessons with a dose of positivity, because that’s what I am about as a blogger and as a person. I have always seen every experience as an opportunity to learn, even those that had me crying buckets and buckets of tears. Maybe it’s my way of healing, my therapy.
Narrowing my scope was to basically confirm what I have always known, but wasn’t really confident about. Now I can comfortably say this is it and have a clear path of where I want to go with this. So that it’s just not another platform out here. Interestingly, it has enabled me to meet like-minded people who share in the same vision and who have contributed to its evolution in their own special way. And I believe there are many more opportunities to learn and grow because of that clarity.
Keep Evolving, Keep Going at It
I don’t think you’ve really lived if you haven’t been told that, “you’re not best suited for this”, “you were not qualified for this”, “we will not be needing you anymore”, “I don’t think this will work out!”, “I just need some space…” or “it’s not you, it’s me.” Should we go on with the list of rejections lines that we’ve received in our lifetime? Because rejection is a kind of hurt that cannot be described, it can only be felt. And it varies from one person to another depending on the intensity of what you have been denied, be it at work, in a relationship or while doing business.
A time like this last year, the biggest concern for the people around me was what would happen if I was rendered jobless? The thought of it gave me the creeps too, to be honest, because it caught me so off guard. I mean, given the state of our economy you can’t quite afford to not have a steady supply of income. Or maybe you can, I just don’t want to find out, because I love milk and 500ml of milk is 80 bob today. That’s a joke, but on a serious note, our operating environment is as tough as tough gets.
So when I toyed around that possibility, I figured I need to mentally prepare myself and be ready for what may or may not come. This meant exploring opportunities in the market and with that comes the process of job applications, job interviews and of course it’s either you get the offers or the rejections. When you get offers, you need to make informed decisions, because you also don’t want to jump from the fire and into the frying pan. When you get the rejections, you have to swallow the bitter pill. It’s a process which humbles you because you’re reminded that it’s a extremely competitive environment and everyone is in to win. No one is in to lose, but when you do lose, because you will at one point or another, it’s also not the end of your world. It has not been the end of my world. Disclaimer: My heart wasn’t ready. Ha! It still isn’t.
“Chances are that, perhaps it was not even meant to be. Everything happens in God’s timing.” To let you in on my little secret, when I lose something I wanted so bad, that’s what I tell myself to kind of console myself. That’s what I tell myself to move on without a heavy heart, because a heavy heart weighs you down. And given that you’re still in the race, whether it’s to get a better job, be in a great relationship or get some good business, you need to move light. And moving light needs you to do much more than telling yourself these things.
Moving light means that you are constantly working on yourself, because there are things about you that work against you in those situations. Therefore, you have to be open to finding out what those things are and fine-tuning yourself based on feedback you’ve been given whether by your employer, colleagues, interviewer, significant other, friends or partner. It means that you have come to terms with the outcome and you’re looking and thinking ahead. Ahead, because when you look back and play out all the ‘shoulda woulda scenarios’, it still won’t turn back the hands of time. But going forward… (That’s my current favorite opening statement, because really, it’s about what will be done going forward). It also means, you can afford a smile, and a real smile.
That’s what I felt in my heart to share with you, because I’m pretty sure I am not alone in this space where I am trying to make out what role I am meant to play in making this world a better place, one action at a time. Realignment for me is pretty much a change of my mind set. And in my own words, positioning your thoughts and deeds and giving them a much deeper meaning that’s fulfilling and definitely beyond just you.
Have a beautiful May and keep in touch.