By far we know that the journey to growth has a way of presenting us the unexpected, the happiness and amongst other things the challenges. so I’m sitting in front of Mugg & Bean so early in the morning as I type this I really hope that the message I need to send really land to the right ears with the kind of intent I would really wish to pass across,I am crossing fingers that the smell of their coffee beans will influence what I’m about to say, looking around me in this restaurant I realize that everyone and I mean everyone is so focused on their screens(Me included), some their laptop screens and others their phones, this on it’s own it’s portrays a picture of a busy life, people on the move, tasks to be completed and people to engaged with.
While this sounds like something everyone can easily do, I have recently discovered that the way life is structured this days we are often found putting ourselves in a position where we want to be fully aligned with our surroundings. the questions like, “How do I make sure I’m aligned with whats happening around me?”, “How do I remain relevant(this happens a lot in the corporate space)?”, and many other questions.
Those who know me well will tell you that I take this life thing so easy, no complications. whatsoever , I have decided earlier on in life that I’d be that girl who just goes with the flow, and do what I feel is right whenever it feels right, with so much discipline of course, I have vowed to leave a life that will just be as pleasing to me and at least people I hold dear. For the longest time I have also grown to understand that if my mind is into anything I have it in me to achieve it, I have for the longest time treated me as a princess who believes that her daddy is a king and she has access to anything in her daddy ‘s kingdom, this helped me in shaping and channelling my view of the world, I have grown to believe I’m worth it, and because of that I have always challenged myself to even go for the things that looks messy, complicated or sometimes just huge. this has overtime proven to always work, I usually have moments of saying “Gurrl you are the champ”, “Woow Hlulani, well done, I’m so proud of you”, “You did it, Look at God”, “But God neh, you never seize to surprise me, this time I really am in awe #Cryingface”.
But like I mentioned earlier, life has a way of presenting us with different kind of challenges, well I’m a no exception, I also sometime get a share of bad coffee early in the morning, well by the way there’s one that I’d like to really share because this appeared to be a very new and foreign experience for me, well not really foreign, lets just say the experience was really extreme than I’m used to, but you know what they say, the higher you go the colder it becomes. So I recently took a new challenge, I changed jobs and started working in a place I never really imagined I would, well to be honest there has been many places that I found myself pinching myself to validate if I was not in dreamland, and this one is also one of those, normally when I find myself in this kind of position I try to learn my way around the place, find myself a survival kit, search for remote controls to navigate my way around and make me feel homely, well my new challenge was not about to join the party, I soon realized that, I have to un-learn most lessons that I have believed to work in the past, I have had to adapt to a culture that was way different from what I had known to be reality for everyone, my first reaction to this was that, “You got this Hlulani, take a deep breath and go with the flow, grab what you need for now and you will survive this.”. Just when I thought the pep talks with myself would be enough to get me through the challenge, I was genuinely starting to feel like I’m in a sinking ship.
We all know that when that happens, you start paying much attention to yourself and every step you take, I’m a no exception, I started looking closely to the work I was doing, I started looking at the environment I was in, and I also started looking and paying a close attention to the people who are meant to be my peers at the time, and ooh boy I was suddenly hit by this questions that I cannot tell where they appeared from, The deadly “How did you make it here?”, “I don’t think you are that good”, “Well maybe your good is not good enough”, “Someone else is handling this space better than you can”, “Are you even going to survive this space?’, “Who the hell do you think you are”, “You might just be a fraud, and sooner or later someone is going to know you for who you really are”. Boy all this voices were in my head, sadly so they didn’t have a timetable, they had a tendency to just come up anytime of the day, and as soon as I got used to them, they almost became familiar that I almost made a permanent residence for them, and in the process I became so vulnerable, so weak, and before you know it my confidence was taking a cotton candy route, it was soon to be labeled as something I had in my previous life.
In this phase I was even so scared to have someone find out that I’m so vulnerable, well anyway that is not so important in this part of the story. But the sudden realization that this phase was so severe for me made grow even weaker, I became really hard with my self. and thank goodness to the sister-ship, one of my colleague I look at as a sister was so available for me, regardless of being abroad she organized a call that was labeled #BlackGirlMagic, we had a good 2 hours of me just opening up to where I was as far as my state was concerned. She was a good listener who made it easy for me to just pour out my heart, after listening she then gave me responses that made me feel like this was not a foreign feeling, we all know that as people we want to relate to something, someone or somewhere, that was heartwarming for me, not because it was gonna give me a quick fix as far as my vulnerabilities were concerned , but at least I had somewhere to look up to for comfort or even help.
One other thing she said that got stuck with me was referencing an experience she had from a book that she labeled to have changed her life, she said to me “Be careful not to be in a position where you start to imposter yourself”, continuing she made me remember that I was worth it, that I deserved to be where I am, that I have a lot of good going on and that is because I’m the right person to do it, and she recommended a book by the name “Lean in”, which as soon as I started reading I found it to be so relatable, I found the realness of how it’s easy to just feel like you are not good, enough or even not deserving, the next thing you know I was also watching TedTalks on Imposter syndrome, which was really helpful for me to regain my confidence, well you know what they say, a step closer to a solution in any problem is acknowledging there is a problem in the first place . well I again started believing I am at the right place at the right time for the right reasons, the pep talks started again and this time was more on “I am deserving, I deserve to be here, there wouldn’t be any better person to take on this challenge but me”, I am not about to tell you that this was an easy cut but I’m happy to let you know that that was just a phase for me that I didn’t allow to have a permanent residence in my life, I believe I’m called for greatness and that’s just about it.
I must share that during that phase and now I became a master of understanding other people who are suffering from the imposter syndrome, it is honestly very sad for many because most might not know they have a condition that needs a cure, this can be caused by many scenarios, someone might have grown to be made to believe they are not good enough by how they have always been teased because some parts of their body is unique, or you lead a unique lifestyle that others might feel is not so normal, or you took on a challenge that stretches your abilities and and and.
More than anything I come to bring the message of hope, you don’t deserve this kind of a vulnerable phase, if I could come out, well babe you can, maybe you need to be in a position where you restructure your thinking again, you can start by reversing all the negatives that the voice in your head is preaching.
You are worth it and I mean in it, everyone deserves better in life.
Guys this is one of my heartfelt blogs and I really hope it hits home.