Committing To Life

Committing, Celebrating and Growing through Life


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Failure is not Fatal

I knew I had grown the day I realized that failure didn’t mean the end, I knew I had learned a lot when I understood that success ultimately separates quitters from those who persevere. One of my biggest fears used to be failing and I would flinch at the thought of being embarrassed by not being “good” at something.

As I grew in this Life thing, I realized that sulking from failure ultimately holds you back. That’s what the drawing board is there for, its there for you to go back to and improve, coach and re-design yourself and your plans when things don’t pan out as expected. The worst thing you could do would be to stop trying and ultimately hold yourself back from everything you deserve and are capable of.

A week ago on 16 May I had my driving test which I was unbelievably nervous about (that fear of failure is still there). It did not go well, 4 minutes into it my legs were shaking so badly and I was so scared that I went forward instead of back. Long story short, I swallowed my pride and scolded at my tears to “please stay out of this one!” I had to book for another test date and my eyes had to be clear for the eye test. Much to my delight and fear (simultaneously) I got a test date for the following week. So here I was granted a second chance to clear my head, dismiss the fear and decide to succeed – fast.

In that whirlwind of emotions that I was currently immersed in, I decided that should it go well I would write about failure in my next blog post. So here I was with one week to go to my test date knowing that 1) I need to pass and get a licence, I do need a car of my own don’t I? and 2) if I don’t pass then I’ve ruined my next blog post. Talk about pressure!

Well here I am posting about rising from failure so 24 May was a very happy afternoon for me.

I could not get my licence in high school because my mother couldn’t afford to pay for my lessons, so I spent the last couple of years trying to sort out my own finances to get it. It (the licence) always being last on my priority list because food & survival was at the top.

It helps that its something that we HAVE to have (unless you’re really a fan of frustration & taxis). But what about the things we can delay for years? How about we apply the same sense of urgency to everything we would like to achieve? Whatever it is that is a mission to achieve and accomplish for you right now: take it back to the drawing board, if its worth it and you want it you’ll find a way.

Whether its your exams (the season has arrived), a project, a work-related initiative, a new job, a relationship that is crumbling, a weight-loss goal and whatever else you are faced with right now that had failed or is threatening to fail: take it and yourself back to the drawing back. Work, improve, research, counsel with those wiser than you & most importantly persevere.

Wishing you all a fantastic week.

Stay committed & if you have a great experience to share re. Rising above failure I’d love to hear about & I know someone else there needs it too.

🙂


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The One’s That Birthed Us

There is always a stage in a female’s life where she clashes with her mother. Where one young female stands up to another much older female & demands to be released from her firm grasp; demands to be understood; demands to be heard. Its inevitable and for a fraction of our lives we see the woman that birthed us as a burden or a hindrance. Its sad (on the surface yes) but beneath that its just one of nature’s turbulences that help us grow.

My mother and I were practically bestfriends (with the occasional fight) for most of my young years. She adored me & I adored her. She provided for me & I returned the favour by excelling at everything I did. It wasn’t until I wanted to break free & pursue my inner passions like writing & art that a wedge began to form between us. I managed to keep the turbulence gentle enough to sustain our relationship till I started university & did Engineering. After my 2nd year I left what wasn’t really my dream. The turbulence got vicious & I was no longer her shining star.

Within all of this I would ask her why she was so hard on me even though I was very responsible (working and studying) and loved her to bits. Her answer was always the same & it still is to this day: “I am hard on you because I know your potential. I am hard on you because I know you can do so much & I want you to become someone I can be proud of.” These words baffled me until I moved from home a year ago & was 100% responsible for the path I am carving. I mentioned in my previous blog post that my mother knows me at my most organic state.

I know each of us has these struggles with our moms, of feeling misunderstood and judged sometimes. The pressure they put on us is simply pressure to transform us into diamonds. 🙂 yes! Sure, they may project their own dreams on us but that’s because they see themselves as well in the glimmer in our eyes. They are strong for us when we are young so we may grow up & be strong for them when they are old. This is a theory I have developed for myself.

It is very easy to terminate a pregnancy or abandon a new born child. Have you looked in the newspaper lately? It takes a numbing of the heart & turning one’s head away from selflessness and love to abandon a life. We should appreciate the women that chose to carry us, birth us, raise us and love us. We should love them with their flaws and appreciate ever sacrifice they have made.

And, to the ones that have lost their moms remember that like energy we are never really destroyed: we simply transformed from one state to another. Souls do live on & they can live within us, the space can be shared. The investments they have made in your life can never be erased & all around us we are surrounded by 2nd and 3rd moms, take heed of phenomenal females who can impart wisdom & love to you.

A gift from me to all females, moms, sisters, friends, moms-to-be: Get yourself a copy of “Women Who Run With The Wolves” by Dr. Clarissa Pinkola EstĂ©s. She too, is an amazing spiritual mother with a wealth of wisdom & healing.

Happy Mother’s Day. You’re all phenomenal.

Stay Committed & have a great week.

🙂

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Plight of a Warrior woman

He said to me: “she is a year younger than you, has a son and no family. And yet, she is so much nicer than you.”

My question would’ve been: “If she is so strong and resilient why is she soaking your shoulder with tears and hanging her entire history on a ‘public-broadcast’ line. If I am so weak how come I haven’t choked through my tears and told you of days my mother couldn’t feed us, getting kicked out and seeing death as the most viable solution?”

And yet, as usual I contained the pain and realized my strength had failed me in a relationship, yet again; Not just my un-defeatable strength but my determination and the fact that I have never lost touch with how much my soul is worth – I am a gem.

What is the role of a woman in society, families, business and relationships if we have to assume a lesser position, a victim position a fragile demeanor, in order to be cherished?

I have always been compared to warriors: ‘you are the next Oprah, you should write a book, you’re an inspiration..’ Etc. For the first time in my life I was compared to a woman who was eager to paint the town walls with her struggles and lure a man into her heart by seeming like a damsel in distress.

I’m terribly sorry but I will never release my power in order to be adored. See, just like there are different coloured jelly beans in a packet, there are also different calibres of men and women in the world.

It pains my heart to see a woman downscale on who she is just to suit a man’s whims. We are human beings, actually human becomings, and so we are on a path of constant growth and rediscovery. That path has nothing to do with assuming a lesser position.

The plights of a strong woman are insanely difficult and I have seen it. A challenge to men is to man up and a challenge to women is to woman up. It has nothing to do with downscaling to suit a person’s whims.

Let’s have a great week 🙂

Stay committed.

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Black Women are Flawed

When I was between the ages of 7 and 15 I thought I was too dark. My nose was too round. I really hated my lips – why were they so full & thick? I hated my body: the day my breasts sprouted & Nature pronounced me “Blossoming Black Rose”. I simply hated the African in me. I did not understand my culture & I did not know how to belong. Too Westernized for ‘Africanism’ and too black for white people.

It wasn’t until I figured out that I don’t have to fit in anywhere, that I had a new-found confidence in myself.

My skin? I loved the soft, light-brown tone of my skin. My curves began to intrigue me. My full lips that had gentle hues of rose brought me warmth. I found the small roundness of my nose cute & I discovered that the confidence with which I walk, stems far beyond and below the Earth I tread.

I found that my confidence had nothing to do with my skin. Confidence, like self-love and many other things, are inside jobs. It was not my skin. My skin was not the catalyst. My skin was not the tool I use to claim my space & command respect.

When I found my confidence I met the black man. I found that stereotypes and the one-track mind of some men led to us, black women, being painted with a different brush.

A brush that made thick & determined strokes of arrogance, demanding, materialistic, lazy, stupid, unforgiving, angry, arrogant, controlling, un-loving, un-affectionate, crazy, insecure, too independent, power-hungry, broken, damaged.

I could really go on but the brush strokes that some black men slander & destroy the image of a black women with is not my concern. My concern is the audacity & lack of respect. The generalization & the negativity.

I cannot speak against or for white women because I have never been white, not even in my past life. I always jokingly refer to having been an Egyptian in my past life. So not even my fantasies can speak up for me. I can speak for women though. I can speak for people.

What I can say is flaws are universal. Flaws penetrate racial & gender barriers. Flaws are part of our human nature. Flaws are not embedded in history, genitals or the amount of melanin found in the skin.

I stand for women. Why? Because I believe that we are strong and intelligent beyond what we fathom. We don’t believe in ourselves because the slightest whiff of self-confidence is dismissed as something negative. We bear children and we build homes, we support men that build even bigger empires outside of the home setting. We ourselves, are capable of building empires outside of the home setting.

I stand for men too. Why? Because I believe each gender plays a different role. That when empowered to do so, men can be nurturing, loving and so phenomenal. But, men have become so stripped of their purpose & power that they believe violence or slandering the other sex will elevate them.

Release it.

As a collective, women have been flawed and as a collective, men have been flawed. To reduce it down to race disappoints me. At my most ignorant stage I thought white men were saviours. It is not about race – it is an internal job that each individual is tasked with.

Black woman: you are not validated by a man, you are not validated by material things, anger doesn’t represent strength, you are capable.

Rise above the stereotypes & focus on your vision. Everything else will then become meaningless static.

I simply stand for people.

Have an amazing week.
🙂

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PERSEVERANCE

I will be reposting my blogs from my very first blog found on Google+. The journey didn’t begin here. I am also still astounded by the lessons I learned. Now that I’m at my 2nd stage of healing and learning: the one of applying lessons and growing I will revisit and share the insight.

Happy Reading and Introspection.
Here is one on Perseverance 🙂

****

You cannot complain about the shadows when your back is constantly turned towards the sun, life is exactly that. The line “life is what you make of it” means exactly that. You are here now, you and all your weaknesses and fears, scars and painful past – you are here. You and all your confusion and remorse – you are still standing. Within the chaos and trauma you are still breathing. Am I the only weird person who sees a warrior within all of us? That a powerful force resides within our souls that simply wants to survive?

Olympic champions seldom ever rest to get that medal. Why then do we want to savour the succulent fruits of life without lifting a finger or giving up before we reach the finish line? Read any success story out there of some powerful person and it will be lined, grounded and laced with blood, sweat, tears and raw perseverance.

Life has an innumerable number of possibilities and greatness – only if you will turn around and face the sun. It gets hard and we want to give up – we are human. However, whether you are running, walking or even crawling – you simply have to keep moving.

Let’s challenge ourselves to making the best of this moment that we are in. Forget about the shackles that hold us to our past and they will release themselves, don’t worry about the future ,because if we savour and take care of the present wholeheartedly, the future will take care of itself.

Smile, laugh and dream. Love and appreciate the beauty around you. Commit to your life. 🙂

THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK: *PERSEVERE – WHOLE HEARTEDLY AND RELENTLESSLY*

QUOTE: “Where there is no struggle, there is no strength”- Oprah

Let’s have a good week

🙂

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Becoming that which we have killed.

 

I would never really notice when someone was giving their all. Honestly, I blind myself to self-sacrifices because I know how personal they can be, I know they come from a place more sacred than the mind, this place is the heart. I stay away from hearts (now) and I guard my own too. Secondly, I did not notice because quite frankly I don’t know when I received this lesson or these lessons but I grew up self-sufficient. At some point in my childhood my third eye opened and I saw what my naive normal eyes couldn’t see and that was that I am my own hero. Not to say that I am island, never. But, that I am my first source of strength and the well I quench from is the Divine one and never a companion or a person.

 

Truth is we all face some sort of struggles as we grow, whether it is personal demons that we fight in order to improve ourselves  as or it is external hurdles that we constantly have to leap over. But there is one thing that I have recently learned:

We may fight our demons, sleigh those dragons and rise from all kinds of desperation and pain but if we do not acknowledge and forgive that which has harmed us it will always become who we are later on. We will become that which we have killed. If you look into the mirror with honest eyes you will see the faint reflection of your enemy staring back. A part of you now ofcourse because you invited him in, you let him stay because you were not strong enough to look him in the eye and say “goodbye & go well, I forgive you”.

These last words, most of the time unspoken but felt, thought, affirmed, are so important. Listen, it is not enough to forgive and release people alone, we also have to forgive ourselves. I know it is hard to forgive ourselves for the pain we have endured but if life was that predictable and we could avoid every stumble we would never learn. You do not have that much control over what befalls you daily, some lessons simply find us, and as we know if we have faith in what is Divine and good it all works out for the greater good of ourselves in the end. Forgive yourself first.

I have walked around with lumps in my throat for a while, forgiven everyone and every rock that I knocked my toe against except the woman who needs it most and that is myself. I asked for strength and I recieved it, but as a woman I have said that our strength is different, we do not show strength with as much command and aggression as males but rather it is silent, unspoken and gently walks into the room. Felt, but never commanding.

My wish is more for us as woman to heal in a way that not only strengthens us but also grants us our gentle nature back. I only understood this when I spoke to a mature friend of mine who had been raped and the maturity, calm and contentment with which she spoke about her rape humbled me so greatly. I searched her eyes for the reflection of the man that stripped her of her innocence but he was no where to be seen. She had forgiven, released and had been granted her gentleness back.

I am not a sexist. I will always believe in the empowerment of women but I also believe in respecting our fairer sex and understanding that we need eachother and the one can never take on the other’s role.

THOUGHT: That we may regain our strength but our gentleness too, woman.

QUOTE: “To be strong does not mean to sprout muscles and flex. It means meeting one’s own numinosity without fleeing, actively living with the wild nature in one’s own way. It means to be able to learn, to be able to stand what we know. It means to stand and live”- Dr. Clarissa Pinkola EstĂ«s (Author of Women Who Run With The Wolves – A must read please 🙂

Stay committed. 🙂


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Consistency..

Whether it is the consistency of smooth batter or a sack of nails, we need to find what defines us and stick to it, we need to begin and keep going. It all begins with a decision.

The dictionary defines consistency as: Conformity in the application of something, typically that which is necessary for the sake of logic, accuracy, or fairness… Consistency is clear then a decision to do something and commit to it with little variation.

What sparked this in my mind is a project that I’m working on. And, as with any big project it brought about with it some major hurdles.

As human “becomings” we are quick to claim fame that we reckon should be rightfully ours, totally dismissing the fact that with any great reward comes great sacrifice. And nature, being the diligent teacher that it is, begins teaching us this vital lesson from a very young age. If you look back, let’s say you can remember that far, how many times did you as a kid try to take your first steps only to go hurtling to the ground time and time again. How many times did you TRY? We don’t need to remember the exact number of tries but we all know it took determination and consistency of taking that 1st step and making it successful then the 2nd.

If we look at life in the same light. Look at every challenge as the 1st step to enable us to make the 2nd, and the 3rd…we can embrace consistency and commit to our purpose.

There will always be hurdles and boundaries that almost disarm the will to carry on. Persist though, persist until your consistency becomes a habit and your fear shrinks into a corner where it belongs.

Your inner voice should be louder than the outer chaos. Your dreams larger than the obstacles before you.

Commit then. Commit to your life. Daily.

🙂 let’s have an amazing week!