Friday, May 20, 2011

Keep your Identity




As human beings we strive to make an impact either in our immediate environment or in the world. While working towards being a force to reckon with, there are a lot of forces that try to sway us. To succeed, we hold on tight to our beliefs and focus on the goals to be achieved.
I have noticed that most successful people rarely ever change the winning formula. Manchester United for instance has won more trophies and accolades from football lovers and critics worldwide because they’ve been adjudged consistent. They have a tradition which they guard jealousy. The British Monarch is also revered, respected and thought to have no equals, simply because it sets its own standards, creates rules and compels everyone who must interact with it to comply, be it individuals or nations.
Unfortunately, same cannot be said for some of us. A common saying amongst our parents in this part of the world is ‘remember the child of whom you are’. They say this because they are well aware of the challenges we face during our daily endeavours, because they know that the greatest and strongest of men have lost their identity just for a moment of pleasure, while being distracted by the most mundane things.
Samson lost his sight to a woman and Esau sold his birthright for common ‘Asaro’ (pottage), other great men in history have also lost their fame, fortune and integrity on account of their lack of self control.
Your identity doesn’t end with your name, social security number, personal data or DNA. It extends to your culture, beliefs, value system etc. It is not enough to chant the ‘I am African’ mantra. Show the world you truely are. Some people travel out of Nigeria and after a few months they rename themselves, bury their manners and sometimes disown their parents, all because they want to belong. You cannot be more English than the British!
A few others go off to study and become so wild one would wonder if they ever heard the word. This identity denial is also evident on our blogs. Why would you agree to things that are against your personal beliefs just so you gain another follower?
I, for instance have personal views about certain issues – no to violent/abusive relationships, no to friends with benefits set ups, no to office romance amongst others – I make these known as I comment on people’s blogs. I’m not asking that you adopt my belief system, you can hate me for it, that wouldn’t change my stand; in the end, you’d either block me or unfollow me. That wouldn’t change the price of tomatoes at Mile 12 market!
If you spend all your time following the trend and trying to become a mirror image of others, you’ll only end up publicizing their achievements while your own dreams die.
Haile Gabriel Selassie didn’t become a long distance race champion because of his handsome face;  Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie didn’t need a sexy name to win the Orange prize. I can almost bet the members of the review board cannot even pronounce her name! Taiwo Ajayi-Lycett didn’t have to go nude to achieve the enviable records she had in the movie industry. I’m sure some of you do not even know she once acted in the popular sitcom Frank Spencer.
Finally, all I’m just trying to say is, be true to yourself, your little beginnings would metamorphosis into a phenomenal future if you keep working at achieving your life’s purpose.





*This post was inspired by BeyoncĂ©’s new video (Run the world). Although I’m not a fan, I’m disappointed in this new person I see. She seems to be infusing too much of Lady Gaga + Nicki Minaj spirit into her style; do you think she’s feeling intimidated by them? That yellow dress is such a disaster... the green one too.
On the bright side, it’s nice to see the African dance style. I particularly love the neck twisting/shoulder jerking one in 1:15min, I’m sure you remember it from 2face Idibia’s Nfana Ibaga video.


Enjoy the weekend y’all.

25 comments:

P.E.T. Projects said...

Okeoghene, please leave your email ad so i can send you explicit instructions for the download.

Thanks

Sisi Yemmie ™ said...

well, i have mixed feelings about the new Beyonce....well maybe this is as a result of her being under new management. But i like some of those jerking moves tho.

A-9ja-Great said...

This is a very important topic.Identities are easily lost just to feel among,like you said.Our identities are us,so if we lose our identities,then we're lost.Nice one P.E.T Projects!

@ilola said...

A lot of people are suffering from identity crisis and they don;t know it. If one chooses to be different, they will say you cannot follow the trend i.e. you are not trendy. Let every one hold themselves, cos I choose to derive my identity from myself and from God

The Corner Shop said...

This is the best advice anyone could ever give you. Be yourself- keep to your style, values, beliefs, and what not.

I confess i didn't see much of what you're saying in the video. I thought she was pretty much herself- though the gold shoes were kinda Gaga. I didn't notice any African dances oh- where were the African dancers she 'imported'.

Ms. Yellow Sisi Unspoken said...

This is so nice thanks for sharing favorite part was when you mention that true dreams dies as we tend to follow trend...over the years I have come to a conclusion that the amount of unique individual varies depending on the environment and society you live in because i sure can't remember struggling much with self identity in Nigeria as i see my younger ones do here

Ibhade said...

*clapping*

yep! i watched that particular episode of Frank Spencer.

about BEY..my sister, if not for internet, i won't know jack of what is happening in entertainment world!

I had read many comments on it, and yet to listen & watch the vid becox i am impatient to wait for it to play due to our S-L-O-W connection..infact, i must confess, i DON'T bother to click on vids in blogs...i skip them and read people's comment.

Wish her goodluck..as you said, it does not affect the price of tomatoes in mile 12...becox i want gain follower, i go dey agree with everything like zombie? ..abegiii!

kitkat said...

Yea i feel we shouldnt compromise who we are and what we believe jst so we can gain people's approval.
I also dnt like Bee's new song or the video, but i dnt think she's trying to be lady gaga or minaj AT ALL!! she's always been very fierce and energetic in most of her videos..check out dejavu,ring the alarm,video phone,single ladies etc..infact there are very few beyonce songs where she isnt over dramatic.

Okeoghene said...

I totally agree with you. Even as we get to know more about ourselves, we should not lose what we know as our identity for "a bowl of asaro" cos if we cant stand for something, we will fall for anything.

My email address is okeoghene00@gmail.com. Thanks for the help.

Chizy K said...

i love ur write up on identity, its so write.
As for Beyonce, i wouldn't blame her entirely cos music moves as fast as the days so u have to re-invent. I'm certain lady gaga would as well if she stays in music for another 10-15 days
I'd love to believe though that despite the change in her music n video style it doesn't affect the identity of her actual person

Chizy K said...

i love ur write up on identity, its so write.
As for Beyonce, i wouldn't blame her entirely cos music moves as fast as the days so u have to re-invent. I'm certain lady gaga would as well if she stays in music for another 10-15 days
I'd love to believe though that despite the change in her music n video style it doesn't affect the identity of her actual person

Chizy K said...

i love ur write up on identity, its so write.
As for Beyonce, i wouldn't blame her entirely cos music moves as fast as the days so u have to re-invent. I'm certain lady gaga would as well if she stays in music for another 10-15 years
I'd love to believe though that despite the change in her music n video style it doesn't affect the identity of her actual person

P.E.T. Projects said...

Sisi Yemmie: I didnt know she was under a new mgt team, well the jerking aint bad.

9ja Great: reminds me of Moses in Eqyptian garment.

@ilola: Identity derived from God is the realest anytime!

Adiya: Yes that shoe is Gaga-ish. If you watch the video again u'll discover the African dance step. There's also a video on Linda Ikeji's blog that outlines the comparison.

Miss A said...

True talk..

P.E.T. Projects said...

Yellow Sisi: That's a theory that may be right although these days pple on this side of the planet seem equally influenced by social networks

Ibhade: My pop kept the VCR for a while oh, Frank spencer is one funny dude.

Kitkat: im aware of the sasha fierce personae but we'll keep watching her and see how long this cycle would last

Okeoghene: Check your mail box dear.

Chizy K: True, time will tell!

Noah's Crew said...

This made my heart smile, thanks for stopping by my blog, nice blog you have here.

Lara said...

Personal Identity...I am clingling so hard to keep mine here, amidst gists of she is too stiff, not social...I find the world pushes us to loose it and blend and it takes diligence and courage to remain true to ones self.

As for the song, I love only the dance...the song is just a waste of time...I see a gaga, rihanna and ciara wannabe in that video.

Naijamum in L. said...

I like this.
I believe strongly in remaining true to oneself.
Some people used to laugh at me that I found it too easy to speak pidgin whenever I was lazing with friends.
My answer - How many times have you seen Chinese or Indians speaking English when they are relaxing with friends.
Some have even accused me of being 'stubborn. because my yes is yes and my no is no.
A person without strong values and beliefs is like an empty plastic bag being blon by a breeze .... any which way

P.E.T. Projects said...

Miss A: Hi dear!

Noah's Crew: Thank you too.

Lara: You will pull through my dear (Omo yoruba ni e o - swagger!)
I know you're not a conformist, they can only sway your boat, they cant sink it!

Naijamum:
RE: "A person without strong values and beliefs is like an empty plastic bag being blon by a breeze .... any which way"
WORD!

Adura Ojo (Naijalines) said...

LOL @ not liking someone's opinion would not change the price of tomatoes at mile 12. And Adichie did not need a sexy name to win the ornage prize. Who says Chimamanda is not a sexy name? :)

Point taken though. Identity is spiritual...that is why Nigeria is struggling as a nation. Many Nigerians do not appreciate themselves. They like to copy others and what is sad is that they copy the negativity of other cultures as opposed to the good of it. We also ignore what is good about us and the core of our identity. I think religion also has a part to play in this. Sadly, almost everything cultural is seen as 'unchristian', 'unmuslim', etc.
We need to check ourselves and get back to some 'positive' values that celebrate our identity as Nigerians and also as Africans...My two kobos.

Myne Whitman said...

Interesting discourse. Very on point.

On the video though, I think you're getting it mixed up. Beyonce has been in the industry before Gaga and has always had her fierce side. Good luck to all them sha.

P.E.T. Projects said...

Naijalines: I know christianity largely refers to some parts of our culture as 'tradition of men' that must be ignored but what happened to some other aspects that arent frowned upon? I think ppl have just thrown caution to the wind and the extent of decadence is appalling.

Myne: I wont even try and argue abt Beyonce, im not a fan but i really do think she's shifting grounds on her core brand... whatever that is!

MsLuffa said...

Not really bothered about Beyonce, the way i see it, what ever choices she makes regarding her music or appearance is a business decision - unfortunately she's in an industry where your personality comes through your work. What is most concerning is the young people who haven't made up their minds about their identity who then take on that of Lady Gaga,Rihanna and Beyonce.
Before we ask these young people to get themselves togther, i guess what this post highlights is that we need to get ourselves together. Less pack menatality, more individuality.
www.msluffa.wordpress.com

Daughter of Her King said...

Thank God through his grace I keep it real.. As in too real... Everyone that encounters me know from day am Unique..

It is important to know yourself and stay true to yourself. No one is saying one should not adopt any culture or any other things. But adopt something that will compliment you not take away ur true identity...

My sis is a typical example, she is incredibly into Chinese and speaks Chinese and still loves Chinese movies/food but she is true to her culture and her values.. (I think that why she gets on well with different people because she is curious and adopts new things but she is still Nigerian)...

Anonymous said...

I hope, it's OK