3 Words You Must Speak Over Your Life
Life is not a popularity contest, the only person that must like you is you.
As you continue to climb the ladder of life, you will inevitably discover that life is far from a popularity contest. That good old saying “You can’t please everybody” will sing a melody in your ear more times than you care to hear the song.
As I continue to examine the reasons that we make most of the decisions that we make, it is because we want others to like us. We want to be liked on social media, we want to be liked in person and we want to be liked for who it is that we aspire to be. And there is nothing wrong with wanting to genuinely make connections and find harmonious, synergistic relationships and exchanges of energy but honesty yields the uncanny truth that being liked does not ensure that you reach your final destination in life. The green mile ahead is often empty, lonely and heavy laden. No matter what path you choose to take or what roadmap you seek for guidance to lead you there, all roads lead back to self-worth.
Please get this: When we set out to be liked, what we are really after is acceptance. Please let that sink in. When we set out to be liked, what we are really after is acceptance. I’m going to say that once more: what we are really after is acceptance. Acceptance feels good and we more easily recognize the things that others find likeable within us. As a born again people pleaser, I recognize this concept all too well. That said, we must make even more of an effort to find those things within ourselves and project them back to the world. No one can know your value better than you.
To take this discussion further, making decisions solely based on popularity will never get you to the promised land: fulfillment of your purpose on earth. The road towards realizing your purpose will often be lonely and isolated. My consistent observation of those who achieve greatness is that often their journeys are not always the popular road and many decisions that are made are not agreeable to all parties.
Recently, I watched Steve Harvey on Oprah’s Lifeclass compare life to pulling an old wagon.
In a nutshell, Steve divulges that we must all make a list of every person in our lives and determine if they are helping us to move the wagon forward. If the answer is no, we must find a stop to allow that person a moment to exit. I would also venture to say that we must examine our roles in the lives of others and determine if we are helping others to push their wagons forward. We too must be accountable for pushing to help others.
In hindsight, the pushing and pulling, toiling and reaching, setbacks and pitfalls must all harness an energy so strong that thrusting forward is the only option. Additionally, as the person responsible for our wagons, we must know our own strength without question. We don’t have time or energy to waste on whether or not someone will like us, we must expend all of our energy towards forward motion and upward mobility. We must be confident in our abilities to pull the wagon versus win the popularity nod of those with us.
But from the ashes, dirt and toil, arises a chosen few who will ride in the wagon, pull the wagon, fix the broken wheel on the wagon and even wash it off along side you because they too see your strength and because they do like you.
Identify those people and work alongside them. You can’t pull your wagon alone. You also can’t pull it in the midst of fear of how you will pull it. These things must all be pressed down and shaken together for good.
When we live our lives for the approval of others, we are not free; we are in bondage. Repeat after me: I AM Free.
In my book A Heroine in Heels, I share the stories of 14 fearless women who pulled their wagons through hardships. It’s great to hear stories about things going well but I wrote this book to give us reminders of what to do when things are in turmoil. Life does rain and we need insight to shield us from the rain.
As I was writing this, I received confirmation that someone reading this needs to be reassured that it is ok to pull harder and more confidently towards their destiny because my mother sent me this text:
Ardre, extremely successful people who are winners, big winners, dream big, stick with their dream, preserve, fight through failure and stay close to The Lord.
I think that’s exactly what I will do, what about you? All my love. ❤️
Ardre Orie, Writer| Film Director| Self-Worth Advocate