There’s a kind of unhappiness that is shared by many, and it’s the unhappiness of not knowing who you really are or living a life that is other than your authentic self. I’ve been a victim of this unhappiness and I shall henceforth refer to it as the ‘plague’.
You know that feeling where you’re in an elevator filled with all kinds people? The air is tight and the mixture of sweat and cologne is choking your lungs out and you’re mentally counting down the seconds till you reach the ground floor. The elevator door finally slides wide open and you’re welcomed with a gush of fresh air? I feel like for the most part of my life i’ve been choked and it’s just now i’m getting my wave of fresh air. That’s just to illustrate how pleased and happy I am.
What was the cause of my plague? All through my teenage years I lived my life through labels instead of living my authentic self. If you were to ask me back then who I was, I could not provide a real answer. If you’re to ask me now i’ll tell you i’m still figuring that out. What I knew was the idea of the person I wanted (and attempted) to be and how I wanted to be perceived by others.
I’ll explain fully for you to understand.
Who is Hasiya? One of the descriptions or things you’ll hear or better yet the ‘label’ you’ll get is that hasiya is a private person. I don’t share much about myself; this is a true fact about myself but because I know and people tell me this all the time, I took the label so dear to my heart and as a consequence everything I do I try to live within the boundaries of that label of a private person.
I’ll throw a question at you, what are private persons like? They don’t reveal much about themselves, they are mysterious, no one really knows or can claim they know them and interested persons are curious about them. The plague kicked in here because as a ‘private person’ I tried to live as such. So whenever something happened to me, I never think or bother to share with someone else except I am forced to why? Because I am a private person, a private person should and would not disclose such private things. This plague was a real problem because I felt limited and choked somewhat and this is a sign of you not living your true self. For example sometimes I would want to post a silly picture of myself or a video of me dancing sheepishly or would want to message a friend and share something that is pressing on my mind but I don’t. Why? Because I was living through a label so I told myself this isn’t you and it’s true, a private person shouldn’t reveal so much or something very private and important to just anyone or be that exposed to the world. Somedays I am my authentic self and I do reach out to that friend, post that picture or video but i promise you I live it momentarily. After some time the voice of your label shall speak to you and overtake you. So if i post a picture or video and the label voice speaks, the very next minute or some time later (after my authentic self tries to battle the label in my head but fails) i’ll delete the picture. Another sign to tell if you’re not living your authentic self is that after deleting the picture for example you don’t feel happy…a part of you wishes you had left it.
This plague I tell you is such a horrible thing and it’s happening everywhere in the world, people are not living their authentic lives but living through labels. I see adults and young adults like myself doing so. It literally took me 20 years to understand this phenomenon that plays subconsciously in your mind that you almost cannot tell and to put an end to it.
I’ll illustrate further. Another label I get is that i’m elegant and have carriage. I’m honestly flattered to be described as such but i’ve never made an effort or strived to be elegant. I just love elegance and i’m drawn to people and things that are elegant in some shape or form. So how did the plague of elegance affect me? There are times I find myself not doing ‘elegant things’ and I start to feel bad as though i’m not living or behaving like my true self; that is an elegant person. I love to wear things that are elegant looking (because i’m just naturally drawn to them) but some days I just want to go out wearing a sweat-pant and a hoodie but i don’t because an elegant person would not wear such out. So instead I would restrict myself to wearing hoodies and my trainers whenever I go workout in the gym or inside the house. So on those days i feel like wearing a hoodie and a sweat-pant and I don’t, i’m not entirely happy because i’m not wearing what i really want at the time. How messed up is that? I never in the past evaluated things like this, it all just became clear to me.
Presently I tell myself i’m not really a private or an elegant person (strictu senso i’m not). What I am is Hasiya and I am a Hasiya person whatever that encompasses. Who is Hasiya? Hasiya loves to wear heels and smell good and is also very lazy and adores her boxers and oversized tees and hoodies. Hasiya enjoys her solitude but appreciates a deep and meaningful conversation.
I was able to arrive at this point because I constantly used to ask myself who are you because i truly didn’t know yet. It bothered me so much because it never really felt like I was living my true self. It is SO IMPORTANT to live your authentic self….to stop seeking perfection and validation from others, to stop trying to live within the boundaries of a label you or others might have given you.
Lately i’ve been focusing on myself and trying to figure out who I truly am. I’m beginning to truly love myself for who i am and it feels wonderful breaking free of these chains called labels. Once you start to live your authentic self you no longer care about what people think or how they perceive you. It’s important to see yourself through your own precious eyes and not through the eyes of others or what the world or media paints you to be. If you like my unapologetic self great! if you don’t even better! Who says you must like me or that i’m a likeable person? We sometimes think too highly of ourselves. If someone doesn’t like who I am it feels…real and reassuring. There are parts of me I myself do not fancy so it’s okay if someone sees the same thing or something else and doesn’t like me for it.
We live in a world where we just want to be liked as though it is the most important thing on earth. You want your pictures to be liked, you want your work to be liked or that job interview they called you in for you want the person interviewing you to like you. You are honestly bothering yourself with the wrong things, what matters is to strive to give/do your best and not strive to be liked by the interviewer as if it would change anything or make a difference. With giving your best you can never fail (whether you get the job or not) but striving to be liked, i’m sorry to break it to you hunny but you are very likely to be disappointed. Note it’s not everywhere you fit. You are your own beautiful shape and certain things and places and positions are meant for you and others are not. Don’t force yourself to be liked, to be a certain way or to belong somewhere you don’t. Quit stressing and know your true friends are out there, your dream job is out there, everything is literally out there but you have to be your true self to get that thing you truly want.
There are so many labels out there: ‘bad’, ‘cool’, ‘funny’, ‘smart’, ‘nice’, ‘hot’, ‘sexy’, ‘black’, ‘white’, ‘asian’ e.tc If you’re described as anything good (or even bad) that’s awesome but do not take them to heart or label yourself and live strictly by those things. You will be doing yourself a great disservice and hindering your self growth.
Someone could describe you as ‘religious’ or you yourself could label yourself as religious but what happens when you find yourself thinking or wanting certain things that aren’t holy and you start hating and condemning yourself. First and foremost you are human and not angels and honestly you shouldn’t aspire to be religious. If anything you should aspire to be God conscious, God fearing and to be knowledgeable. Often times we are quick to label ourselves…you think you are religious when instead you are just God fearing. By being God conscious you remember God in everything you do, being God fearing deters you from doing certain wicked or inappropriate things. However, being God conscious and God fearing isn’t enough. Be knowledgeable. Why doesn’t God want me to drink alcohol? If your fear of God isn’t so strong perhaps your knowledge of the punishment of drinking alcohol or killing someone will deter you from committing the act. Or if that knowledge of His punishment doesn’t scare you enough then think about what happens to people who drink? Their health…their behaviour, is that something you want? Surely one of those things would deter you. Being religious is not just about following the laws and rules of Christianity or Islam, being religious also encompasses you being God conscious, God fearing and knowledgeable. However, simply being God fearing or knowledgeable doesn’t make you religious so beware of the labels you give yourself.
My very last example is the label of a person that is truthful. Truthfulness is a very beautiful and invaluable quality to have but if you label yourself as a truthful person, I fear that in all circumstances you find yourself you shall speak the truth and believe me it is not in all cases you should speak the truth. You may think i’m chatting rubbish now but permit me to explain. Sometimes (but in very limited circumstances) the best and right thing to do is to lie but I promise you if you live by the plague of truthfulness, you won’t be able to lie. I’ll give an example, you overhear your parents having a heated argument in their bedroom and your dad left for work earlier than usual that morning and he looked very angry. Your mum is also very angry at your dad and decides to punish him by not making his dinner and went to bed early that night and told you to tell your dad if he were to ask for his food that there is no food. Judging by their behaviours you can say their fight was not ending anytime soon. So your dad comes back home and finds in his usual spot on the dining table his meal waiting for him. He is very tired and hungry and you start to dish his food. Before eating he eyes his food and looks up at you and asks who prepared this dish? You prepared the food but you lied and told him it was mum and you probably even added jara to the lie to paint your mum as a very loving and wonderful wife he is blessed to have. This lie you told him would extinguish or blow down his steam because he was already expecting the worse (that she wouldn’t cook for him and make him starve or lock the house gates) and he in turn was prepared to do something drastic should the worse happen. With the lie you told he now sincerely believes that whatever the misunderstanding he and your mum has, she remains the loving wife and he appreciates that so much. He may even start to feel guilty for thinking bad of her and the plans he had concocted.
The next morning he is in a lighter and good mood and is no longer mad at your mum and has sorted things out with your mum. Your help and lie is what patched things up with your parents. Perhaps later on he finds out that you were the one that prepared the food but it wouldn’t matter then because things are better between your parents. Things needed to be better at that moment you lied to him. You did more good than harm in lying which goes against the label or the teaching that telling the truth is always the right thing to do. A person who lives by the label of being a truthful person would feel the need and will tell the truth at that moment the dad asked who prepared the food. That is what labelling does to you, it defines you and you don’t define it or get to manipulate it to a standard where it applies and agrees with you personally. A truthful person is always a truthful person but when you start to decide when and when not to be truthful ‘then you are not a truthful person but rather your own truthful person.
I repeat it’s in very limited circumstances that being truthful isn’t good and the above example is very different from covering someone up. If your mum is a drug addict and you found her sniffing cocaine the night before and your dad asks you about it because he suspects she’s still under the influence, your fear of not wanting them to separate, which could prompt you to tell a lie is bad here. In this instance you have to tell the truth whether you are a truthful person or not. Yes things may strain or end their relationship but your mother’s life is the greater thing to protect here and not their marriage. You lying and covering up for her won’t help her even if she begged you. By telling your dad the truth and not covering up for your mum, he’ll get her the necessary help before she takes further steps that could end her life.
That’s really all I wish to say. Get rid of all your labels and spend some time discovering who you truly are. You don’t and shouldn’t have to live strictly by one or more labels if indeed they are labels you can be attributed with. No doubt you’ll be affected by the plague if you choose to live a life other than your authentic one. Once you are able to learn about yourself, the next thing is to have the courage to live your true self, your authentic life and not settle for less or be with people that don’t fully appreciate you for who you truly are.
Below are some interesting pictures i believe complements this post…do check them out 🙂
Have a wonderful day,
Your one and only,