Choose Yourself

It was the beginning of the year. I was expected to go back to school, to finish my final year. My parents thought I only had one module left. But they didn’t know, that I had six. That I just spent the last 3 months of last year, writing a book instead of assignments.

On top of that, I was planning on not going back.

As cool as my parents are, I knew they wouldn’t approve, that they would say the same thing everybody I spoke to said.

“You’re so close to finishing. Just finish. Why waste all the years you’ve completed.”

They had a point. Without a degree, I couldn’t claim all the years I studied. I couldn’t claim the high marks I got. My c.v. would look like someone who never went to tertiary. The years in University, would essentially be a waste.

However, I knew they weren’t. My parents knew they weren’t. Anyone who had the privilege of seeing my academic transcript, would know they weren’t. If you read my writing, you would see they weren’t. And if you spoke to me, you would hear they weren’t.

But according to a piece of paper, they were.

A degree is a piece of paper, a material. It signifies the type of knowledge a person has. Like how a woman’s hips, signify how fertile she is. However, judging a person’s character, using a piece of paper, is… superficial. Its materialism. It’s the same as judging people by their looks.

I am not my c.v. I am not as dumb as my c.v suggests I am. And I am definitely more educated than my c.v says I am. I’ve never studied journalism, but I’ve worked for a magazine. I’ve never studied English literature, but I wrote three books in six months. Books I’m going to release this year. Books I hope you all will enjoy.

The depth of my soul and knowledge transcend materials. I learn because I love what I’m learning about, not for validation. I’ve enrolled in a vocal production course online, but I can’t put on my c.v, because I’m not paying for it. But if you listen to the music I produce now, you can hear the improvement. You can hear the hundreds of hours I’ve dedicated, learning about music.

The same with my writing. I’ve never been formally educated in writing. A decision I chose to make. I never wanted to learn about writing, I wanted to write. I preferred to learn about things I can write about, not writing itself.

However, when you read what I write, I pray you can see the dedication. The thousands of hours I’ve spent working on my craft. The sacrifices I’ve made to develop this skill.

There’s more to me than meets the eye. There’s more to you too. Everybody has a talent or a skill the world doesn’t know about. Some are fortunate enough, that the world does.

I purposely dumb myself down. I wear worn down shoes with holes in them. I rarely talk about my achievements when I meet someone. Only those close to me know who I am, what I know and how hard I work. If you met me in the streets, you would think I’m a scrub. If you spoke to me for ten minutes, you would think I’m a drug addict. If you followed me for a lifetime, you would see, I’m destined for greatness.

What about you?

What interest do you have that the world doesn’t know about?

What do you spend hours reading about in private?

I believe there’s more to everyone than meets the eye. Because there more to me than what you see. The challenge is pursuing your dreams. Chasing what you want, with no remorse or care about what everybody will think. I know people who are pursuing certain careers for validation. People who want to be psychologists because it validates how smart they think they are. They ignore the fact that they hate going to class, and learning about Piaget.

* Freud’s more interesting because he talks about sex, and everybody loves talking about sex *

They ignore the activities they run to when they want to escape, the drudgery of doing what they hate. And they don’t pursue a career in these activities, because the world doesn’t approve of them. They seek validation from the outside, instead of within. They want the world to tell them what they’re doing is worthwhile, instead of telling themselves.

Ironically, the world doesn’t have to live your life. You do. And you only get to live it once.

Why waste it living somebody else’s life?

Why waste it by becoming the person your parents wanted to be, but weren’t brave enough to do it themselves?

When death comes to collect our souls, the amount of money we have won’t matter. The number of compliments we received will fade.

What will remain is how we feel. How we feel about the life we lived and the journey we traveled. How we feel about the people we met and the relationships we made. Don’t sell yourself short. If you don’t enjoy what you’re doing now, you’ll hate it more when death arrives.

Pursue your passions. Chase your dreams. Nobody lives your life but you.

Funny enough, people will tell you what you should do. And they’ll be the first ones to blame you, if you listen to them, and it doesn’t work out. I realized this the first time I went to university, and I flunked my course. My parents blamed me for wasting their money. Even though, choosing to not go to school, wasn’t an option.

That’s when I realized that I was responsible. Even if I let someone dictate my life, I was responsible. I could blame them for pushing me to go to school, but I would have to live with the decision. Don’t let someone else dictate your life, because you the one who must live it.

Choose yourself, you’ll never regret it. Even if things don’t go your way. Knowing that you tried, and you gave it your all, is good enough.

 

Do you want to learn how to choose yourself?

Check out my new book, How To Live Forever: A Guide To Transcending Your Limitations.

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