So I’ve been going through a bit of a slump lately, feeling extremely fatigued and with way too many things on my plate than my little body and mind can handle. You’re probably thinking of a “self-help” book that I can read to help lift my spirits or “organize” me right? Well, I’m not one for that genre and tend to lean into the “rolling of eyes” direction when offered one. Perhaps I haven’t been thoroughly convinced. Please refer to Siphathi’s thoughts on Self-help books: So, How’s That Working for You?
I took the time to do some reflecting upon some of the issues that are the root to my slump, and truly in the words of a friend
“one is not discouraged by the environment, but the components of that environment”
It was a bit of a cyclic statement which I found true. So my post today is not based on a single book, but pieces of learnings from a number of books, quotes and images (my own versions of self-help I guess).
I have been struggling with feeling fulfilled and complete. Fulfilment aligns with happiness, and it is my strongest thought that many of us do not consciously acknowledge that we are unfilled and as a result not truly happy. We mask the sadness behind work, play and all other time consuming activity. A friend of mine recently went on an “Eat, pray Love” one woman style mission into other Africa countries, to explore, to find herself and to be HAPPY!- Oh how I envy her. Because all this masking is exhausting. I have accepted that I have been masking, and in the words of Iyanla Vanzant “until you heal the wounds of your past you are going to bleed!” This masking stems from way before my present day life and we have been masking wounds from our past for so long the masks look like forgiveness or a version of euphoria. It is NOT! I found the best way to start the road to fulfilment is first creating that deep sense of communication and connection within YOURSELF. Sounds a little cliché but how often do we reflect, openly and honestly with ourselves? Establish, Acknowledge and ACCEPT the wrong we have done, that has been done to us and HOW it makes us feel…
“Give yourself permission to tell the truth to yourself” – Iyanla Vanzant
My lack of fulfilment stems from historic occurrences and present condition. An African child with the love for Africa, a love for BLACK!
How do I embody and embrace this love when I am stuck in the wheel of routine? South Africa recently celebrated a historic day: June 16; 40 years after the African student revolted against being taught in a language that was not theirs, a language they did not understand and a language that oppressed them. 40 years later and the African youth in South Africa still fights the same battles masked under diplomacy and BEE. This battle is not a battle of language, financial freedom or equal numbers in the work environment, this is a PERCEPTION WAR! How we as African perceive “whiteness” as a standard and WHY we allow them to perceive us as not adequate through our self-doubt. I will take you back to the mind of Biko in “I write what I like “our first Club read (please read FALLING IN LOVE WITH STEVE:
“The most potent weapon in the hands of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed.”
Being black is not a matter of pigmentation – being black is a reflection of a mental attitude.
Black Consciousness is an attitude of the mind and a way of life, the most positive call to emanate from the black world for a long time.”
“You have to be willing to lose everything to gain yourself” – I know the things I’m NOT willing to lose in the road to gaining myself, the road to fulfilment. It is only through this mental attitude, self-awareness and self-knowledge that Nirvana is truly found and intuition into what direction to take your life is found! I started small, with a 20min Yoga session and finally getting round to taking a leap of faith into an adventure I’ve doubted to take. To bring change to myself through small actions to happiness! I read a quote that truly disrupted my thought landscape and set me on this journey, it read:
“Beware of destination addiction: The idea that happiness is in the next place, the next job, or even the next partner. Until you give up the idea that happiness is somewhere else, it will never be where you are.”
African Child- Be Fulfilled, Be happy.
#40yearslater #june16 #youngafrica #journeytoselfactualisation #selfhelpnotselfhelpbook #Nirvana
By Nwamara Obiike
This is probably around the time of the year when we start reflecting on whether we have achieved what we had set out to achieve. It is very easy to get bogged down with life and feel frustrated. Take time to find your Nirvana and do what works for you! – Lee Nyenyezi