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Never Beg For What You Have The Power To Create

Never beg for that which you have the power to create or earn.

I remember growing up as a young girl and playing in the streets. I was always the one that didn’t get picked for the team. My hand co-ordination was disastrous and I couldn’t jump higher than a few odd centimetres and so I was always disqualified from the team. On days when the other children felt generous or my older sister would come to play, I would be given the role of “all change”. The “all change” position meant that I wasn’t really on anybody’s team and so no team would be liable for the mistakes that I would make. I belonged to everyone because no one could take the risk of owning me.

My lack of co-ordination made me a costly player. I was always a relatively pleasant person though, so everybody tried to let me down easily. They did it in good faith. They’d tell me that I would play next time or that the rules had changed and they would explain them to me later (needless to say that by the time it was ‘later’, it was dark and my parents are black-do the math).

never beg

It began to dawn on me that I wasn’t good at sports. It just wasn’t my thing. I was pleasant enough for the netball coaches to like me, but I wasn’t good at it so they just couldn’t pick me. After spending my youngest years trying to become the person that I thought every young child should be, I began to realise that there is no template of what a child should represent. I was good at thinking and speaking. My skills weren’t particularly the most popular and they came with a set of nerd glasses and a mouth full of braces.  In hindsight I learned that these were the foundations of how I would later identify myself as a person.

Many people wear templates and take on identities of what they perceive to be fit for a person of their demographic. We go around living the life that we’re expected to live because of the mannerisms and actions have been set out before us.

The seemingly simple story of my childhood translates into the people that we are as adults. We often try incredibly hard to fill a role that was never ours to begin with. Perhaps a reason for this is a lack of knowledge; at 8 years old, I wasn’t aware of the world of options that awaited me. I could read, play chess, write poetry and speak publically. Those were my strengths but I overlooked them because I focused on what I wasn’t good at and neglected to capitalize on my strengths.

Stop waiting for other people to call you to join them. Create your path. The problem with being a joiner is that you begin to place your value and level of ability in the hands of those that seem to know better. Your life becomes one that is dependent on the opinions of others. Ironically these ‘others’ are ordinary people just like yourself but they have the ability to predict the trajectory of your life simply because you gave it to them. We wonder why we aren’t as successful or as brilliant as the people that we look up to and the answer lies with us. It’s crucial that we don’t allow it to get dark while we’re waiting to get picked.

This entire memory highlights a simple lesson for me:

Don’t subject yourself to the approval of others and never beg for that which you have the power to create or earn.

By Nozi

8 comments on “Never Beg For What You Have The Power To Create”

  1. This resonates with me...I feel that we had similar childhood challenges. I always wanted to fit it & I failed at netball dismally. There's nothing I didn't do in sport whether I was good at it or not is another question. Because everyone did it soba joined the crew. As I grew older the things I was teased about are the things I excel in today.

    Lovely article Nozipho

  2. Beautiful article, really loved reading it. Thanks Nozi, one to be read again and again, if you ever find yourself in that position.

  3. Tjo Nozi! So true hey. This goes hand in hand with wanting to be a people pleaser always. Where does it leave you later? Purely because you wanting to fit in. we shuld really focus on what speaks to us and exel in that. Glad I have taken this journey and discovered mine

  4. I always think the best part is looking back at those early days to finally realise it was always going to work out. Love it.

  5. Wow Nozi.
    The truth right there.
    As kids we did not know much , but as adults it is up to us to explore and find our lane( not only just find it, but excel in it as others have mentioned )

  6. Ohhh that's my story, I was the girl that was never picked. There was this other girl that liked me and she was good at all the stuff that we'd ply. She'd choose me knowing I'm the weakest link. Sometimes she's help me out knowing if we get caught we disqualified. She later became my best buddy and now we chat from time to time and if she is around we chill together all because of what she did for me way back. Everybody would want to be in her team while me on the other hand nobody wanted to risk ngam. Arg, thank God that those days are over... I smile when I think of them now.

  7. I completely concur with the sentiments in the article and i know that a lot of people can relate to being the oddball. Growing i always sought the approbation and validation of my contemporaries. Needless to say i was never good enough by their standards. I am so glad that i did not conform and give up on myself. Never fitting in gave me the opportunity to learn about myself and to realise that i am a cool chick. It made me a self-sufficient person and i am unafraid about carving my own path and walking the road less traveled. Awesome article.

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