For so many years I’ve used the excuse, “I hate being the center of attention.” I never looked at it for what it really was: an excuse. I just saw it as my truth. And the truth being, I didn’t like being the center of attention. I preferred being low key, and behind the scenes. Don’t get me wrong, being “low key” isn’t a bad thing, but for me, it became one. I always knew that my talents in singing, writing, and fashion weren’t things that I could conceal. They beckoned to me, to be seen, whether I liked it or not. But here’s the catch: my personality at the time wouldn’t allow it.
How the hell could I be the center of attention when I couldn’t even give myself the necessary attention? Like most things in life that are worth working towards, the process isn’t easy. Like most who possess artistic abilities, I was often told, “you’re going to be a huge star one day.” And I must say for me, the sound of those words together made me want to faint. It was almost as if I had a self-fulfilling prophecy attached to a never-ending dilemma.
It was always easy for me to cheer, support, and see the purpose in others, but it was impossible for me to see it in myself — or so I thought.
I’ve always found myself asking others, “what is it that you see in me?” And I was usually left with the short response, “you’re special, there’s just something about you.” Okay, that’s nice and all but what does that mean?, I would ask myself. Over time, I became my biggest enemy — not because I didn’t like to be the center of attention, but because I felt like I wasn’t even worthy of it.
And that was just it: worthiness. I’m a big advocate of positivity, kindness, and love, and not to toot my own horn but people love to be around me. I would often be told, “it’s your personality, your kindness, your energy, it’s how you make people feel.” Then it hit me — I have talents that require an immense amount of attention. I’ve inspired people and I’ve yet to even step in my purpose… imagine what would happen, imagine how many lives I could change if only I applied that towards myself and my talents. In layman’s terms, I’d experienced unnecessarily difficult lessons by not walking in my purpose — it was about time to take that first step and see what happens. It was a long process, to say the least, and I can only compare it to learning how to ride a bike for the first time.
I started off by looking in the mirror and repeating these lines: you are worthy, you are beautiful, you are talented, you are amazing, and being who you were called to be is your tithe back to the universe.
I said it every morning after I finished brushing my teeth, and every night. Over time it became habitual; I would look in the mirror and not even realize I was speaking life over myself. I even took it upon myself and journaled my ideas, and seeing them written down on paper made them as real as I’ve always wanted them to be. Persistence. Consistency. Understanding. Determination. I had to keep that in mind if I truly wanted to walk in my purpose, and boy, was I determined to. Not only did I change my perception of self-care and manifestation, but I took things a step further and decided to work towards building my God-given talents.
Winston S. Duke said, “It’s not enough to have lived. We should be determined to live for something.” I decided to live for myself and was not disappointed. Life became meaningful again and being who I was called to be finally felt right. There was no me if I didn’t believe in me, and there wasn’t hope either. Realizing that I’ve been in my own way was a tough pill to swallow. But it was worth it, and accepting that helped me to be the person that would get out of my own way. I decided to let go and give it a go, and I can honestly say, it was the best decision of my life.
(Featured Artwork: Recipes For Self Love)