words by nerissa

…observations, thoughts and questions

Archive for the category “Being yourself”

Take a look at yourself

During our life, we are often pigeon-holed.

Kids in the playground tell us we are not good at this, can’t ever do that. Other people make comments about our weight, our height, our nose. People put us down for our beliefs, our cultural backgrounds or simply because we live in a certain place.

But the saddest thing is that long after these words have been said, we are keeping up the conversation with ourselves. Telling ourselves we can’t do this, we don’t have that, we’re not smart enough, or confident enough, or rich enough…..or whatever.

This week I saw a video that I saw a few years ago. It’s by a remarkable and inspiring Australian called Nick Vuijicic. Some of you may have seen his story. He was born without arms or legs. Yet he has achieved more than what most of us would even dare dream.

Why? Because he is grateful. Grateful for what he does have. Grateful for what he can do.

And boy, can he do a lot!

He also has an unshakeable belief in the power of God.

In this video he states: “It’s a lie to think that you’re not good enough. It’s a lie to think that you’re not worth anything”.

In this very consumer-driven, materialistic world, it is easy to think the opposite. Advertisers tell us we need the latest car to look cool, or a certain brand of shoes to be popular, or to style our hair a certain way, or we’ll be ‘out of the loop’.

It’s lies. All lies.

As a Christian, I believe that we are all created by God. We are all created differently. We have different gifts (talents or skills, if you like). We all look different. We sound different. We live in different places. We believe different things. All of us are different. Different is not bad. Being different is not wrong.

We were created by a God who does not make mistakes. You are the way you are, for a reason. So to think that there is something wrong with you is a lie.

As a parent, I am teaching my children to know how very special and individual they are. That they have real gifts and treasures, bestowed upon them by God, and He wants them to use them and shine in this world — not to be like everyone else. That they are good enough as they are. They don’t need to impress anyone else or be like anyone else. The only thing they have to be is who they are meant to be.

So my challenge to you is to watch the video below — it will only take 4 minutes — and look inside you, to see what you can bring to this world. What can you do? What do you have that can make a difference?

Take a look at yourself.

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At the risk of offending you…

Yesterday I sat down to write my blogkeep calm and think before you speak

There was something I wanted to write about. This issue had been popping up in various forums all week. It was something that was frustrating me, making me feel angry — and I was feeling quite fired up about it.

There was quite a bit I wanted to say. Some of it was likely to be controversial.

But the trouble was, there was too much I wanted to say — so I edited it.

There was too much that was controversial — so I cut it out.

I ran the risk of offending people — so I toned it down.

And then, there wasn’t much left at all.

It left me wondering how often do we do this? Feel like we have something important to say but water it down because we don’t want to offend people. Feel like people won’t be interested in our point of view so we shorten our conversation.

On the other hand, sometimes we do share what we feel is important but do so while we are still feeling emotional about it.

When this happens, our arguments are not well formed, we usually offend people, (hey, sometimes we don’t care if we offend people), and we lose credibility. I think I was at risk of this yesterday, despite the fact that I strongly believed in what I was writing.

It seems to me that there is a delicate balance of being ‘true to yourself’ and what you believe in, and respecting where others are at.

Sometimes it is easy to forget that we were once where they were — thinking the same things, believing the same things — and we become impatient because we have ‘moved on’ and they have not.

We feel we have the right to ‘preach’ to them that our way of thinking is right and theirs is wrong.

We project our morals, values and beliefs on them, and get frustrated when they don’t measure up to our expectations.

Instead, we should be meeting them where they are. We should understand that their path is not ours. We should remember that they have a right to look at things with different eyes.

That doesn’t mean that we should not speak up about issues we feel strongly about.

It simply means we need to think a little more before we speak.

So, the issue that I wanted to write about has been put on the shelf for a while. I still feel very strongly about it and I will write about it one day.

But for now, the moral of the story is ‘think a little before we speak’ (or write, in my case)!

Cheers.

 

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words by nerissa

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