“I woke up like this…. I woke up like this….FLAWLESS!” – Beyoncé
Man, this line has literally been stuck in my head since the first time I listened to this song! Don’t judge me. Queen Bey is my girl but that line definitely over steps confidence and slides right into pride’s home base. In my mind, P.R.I.D.E. stands for People Really into Demonstrating Egos. Yes, I know it’s corny but if someone is prideful, wouldn’t they also be considered as obnoxious and self-centered? Where is the compliment in that? Honestly, I value being perceived as a woman who exudes confidence and conviction. I have always been driven by my love of people and sense of accomplishment. However, there were too many times in my past where my confidence tripled and transitioned into pride. I’ve had a few relationships that were tarnished due to my “Wrong and Strong” attitude. I know you are familiar with this term. It’s that person who only sees things their way and even if they are right, their delivery of the truth makes you oppose them. Yup, that was me.
If I had a penny for every time I was told “It’s not what you say, Kiki, but HOW you say it”, I would be rich! Like Oprah rich. You’ll notice that I reference Oprah often. You have to respect her because she is a “tell you like it is but hug you after” type of lady. Kind of like me, ha! Seriously though, I admire her because she is an influential black woman who gets paid billions to say and do whatever she wants. I’m sure she has some restrictions but I don’t witness the filter so she’s pretty much invincible in my eyes.
According to writer, Mfonobong Nsehe, on Forbes.com for 2014, “This year, Nigerian oil tycoon Folorunsho Alakija joins American TV mogul Oprah Winfrey and Isabel dos Santos of Angola as the only black female billionaires on the FORBES billionaires list.”Although my name will be mentioned in the future, how amazing is that? And this goal is not about money. Please don’t get me wrong, I will absolutely embrace being a billionaire one day. However, I’m referring to being an elite hard worker who paves the way for those to come after you. She is an African-American who is a woman and media mogul. She is so inspiring that I could not express to you in one simple blog post what her existence means to me.
It’s more than Oprah’s success. Her life is inspiring yet intimidating because she confirms for me that in order to reap the rewards you must go through a PROCESS. I’m not sure if you are familiar with Oprah’s biography but she certainly did not become famous overnight.
I know we all love going through a process, don’t we? Nope, me neither. However, we have to endure a process to move to the next level.
“Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death.” – Anais Nin
2013 was one of the hardest years of my entire life. That’s because so many of my layers were removed. First went my pride. Then onto losing many desires. And I can’t forget about my need for people’s confirmation. They all vanished. It was scary and peaceful all at once. I am human so life does throw me curveballs but I now can humbly approach each stage. Even though sometimes I wish I could, I cannot control my circumstances; I can only control my reaction. Every single day is a chance to get better at it. I understand that these stages are all necessary to become who God has designed me to be. Looking back, there are so many experiences that I wish that I could: control + alt + delete! But would I be the Kiki that I am today? A great lesson I’ve learned is that my happiest moments, trials and tribulations are not just for me. They are so that I can sincerely encourage someone along their way.
Not that I feel old or anything *cough* but that fact that I am turning 27 this year reminds me that time waits for no one. You ever hear that saying that the only the constant in life is change? Well, that is absolutely true. Like the quote above says, life is a process of becoming and involves going through different stages. If you are the same person at 27 years old that you were at 19 then you are wasting time. It’s definitely not easy but “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9). There are so many questions that run through your mind when you start growing as a person. Honestly, I had a few of my own. What will people think if I change? Will I have any friends if I no longer like to party? Looking back, none of these questions even mattered. No one’s opinion will grant you eternal life but God.
Overall, change is hard but good for the soul. It is so easy to point out someone else’s flaws even if they wake up flawless *cue Beyoncé*. The hard part is looking in the mirror and taking ownership of your own areas of improvement. That’s exactly what I had to do. I still have a little feisty side but it’s less prideful and more courteous. I make a decision every day to keep making positive changes. Before I accepted the reality of growing in my faith, my maturity was stemmed by a book called “The Secret” by Rhonda Byrne. Once I read it, The Secret motivated me to rebuild my perspective on life. My blossoming is focused on my character thus far and that pride of mine had to get the boot! We should all ask ourselves: What’s holding you back from dancing into your next stage of this thing called life? Pride was first for me, what about you?