Living your Life like it's Golden

16 January 2017

Life is a very beautiful thing. It is very precious that it cannot be exchanged with or transferred to the next person. Surely there must be something significant about each individual that their life could only belong to them and no other. But what does this mean? In Economics, when measuring a scarce commodity, we attach to it a very high value in order to limit its consumption and hence discourage its extinction. To be practical, let’s take one commodity we are very familiar with, gold. Do you think if gold was available in abundance to an extent that our streets were made of it; it would be as valuable? Clearly not. Therefore, it means that you need to value yourself highly because there can only be one you and no other.

The things you do, the conversations you engage in and your dreams, should speak to the value you put on yourself as an individual. You cannot afford to allow anyone or anything to just creep into your life for whatever reason. You need to value yourself this much, so that you may begin to appreciate your purpose on earth and be able to pursue it wholeheartedly. Valuing yourself does not in any way mean ignoring other people or putting them down, but it means recognising your individuality and how that can contribute to others as well.

There are various factors which contribute to building confidence and getting a person to appreciate their value, but one most important factor I would like to point out, is that of being in touch with self, scholars call it self-awareness or self-actualization. It is said to be a “realisation or fulfilment of one’s talents and potentialities which is considered as a drive or need present in everyone”. If you think of yourself as nothing, you probably have not gone through a process of trying to learn yourself which results in lack of direction. No one is born empty, the only thing you lack when you are born are experiences which shape how you use those inherent talents. So how does one begin with this process?

My experience is that people are naturally drawn to things which they are talented in or capable of doing. This means that when people confirm that you are talented in certain areas, to you it usually isn’t a surprise because you already know. You might not have been confident acting on those talents, but that would become your challenge, to throw yourself in the deep to really see if surely you can swim. Something I could have never denied as I was growing up is my musical gifting; I like to refer to it as a calling. My aunt narrated a story to me of how at the age of 5, I was so stubbornly addicted to musical sounds. She says whenever I heard live instruments playing, I would drop everything that I was doing and I would ask her to ready me to leave, if she refused, I would put on lotion without bathing and clothes which were easily accessible then rush to wherever the sound was coming from. It did not end there, when I got to that place I would want to go in front and sing. You could imagine how this God given talent brought some embarrassment to my aunt. She would have to go around looking for me so she could change my torn pants so that I look at least decent though I was not invited to those events I was gate crushing.

My talent enabled me to build my confidence and also to help others with the same gift to do the same. The most rewarding part about this is that, once confidence is established, it can help you in many other spheres of your life. I know it helped me in my scholarly years and also in my social life. Trust me, if you are confident, you will not feel threatened in the midst of those who are as confident or are doing well for themselves because you would have conquered all insecurities about yourself. What am I trying to communicate? That if you do not know your talents then you do not know your value? Absolutely not. I am trying to paint a picture that a discovery of your usefulness in whatever form, can to some extent help you begin to appreciate yourself more. In that way, you do not allow anyone to waste your time or take you for granted, in turn, you also treat others with outmost respect. One author once said “There is only one you, and that is your power”. May you not deny the world greatness by settling for less than you are worth, who knows; maybe you have the solutions to some of the problems the world is facing today.

Nkateko Governor Manganye

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