Not My Best Self

I settled for less than I deserved.
Going opposite of my instincts became the norm,
all in the name of a peaceful life.

Quick to budge;
always caving in to other people’s demands.
Being naïve was just getting played out.
I couldn’t keep enjoying my excuses.

Rough around the edges,
bracing for my transformation,
but hard-work stopped the race before I got started.
I wasn’t ready to overcome my fears, or so I told myself.

Candor

I write for me.
Though I’m hoping my openness will assist you
in getting to the following chapter in your life.
By selection, I open my heart
to your wounded soul.

God knows the afflictions I’ve faced,
it has not been easy
publicizing my soul to the world.

You’ve felt my vulnerabilities.
Vacationed with me on the back-and-forth
fist-fights with anxiety
and all the predicaments life dishes out under one roof.

I write for me.
Though I’m hoping my openness will assist you
in getting to the following chapter in your life.
By selection, I open my heart
to your wounded soul.

Approval Addiction

Behind the noise
of other people’s opinions,
I hid behind my greatness.

I’d tell myself “I didn’t like the spotlight,”
ducking behind the scenes,
I felt comfortable. I had nothing to lose
except for my comfort zone.
It would take a lot for me to give that up.

I’d go to meetings,
so apprehensive; I’d feel imprisoned.
The entertainment in my head
of what other people thought of me,
always on replay, ravaged my life.
I didn’t know how to stop the music.

And for the days preceding these encounters,
I’d be restless, couldn’t sleep,
couldn’t think straight; just a mess
and on the day of these gatherings,
I’d shiver in my seat, couldn’t speak
they had their titles for a reason,
they knew more than I did,
that was my conclusion.

I was where I was for a reason,
always trailing behind
the observation of other people’s reality;
I didn’t see myself outside of
the descriptions I adopted as my personality.

My ideas,
I wanted everyone to like,
but I’d end up clutching them to myself,
dreading their almost irresistible rejection
if I dared open my mouth
to “challenge” authority
or at least that’s how I saw it;
it was more dependable that way.
Always telling myself “no, I could not do it”;
dismissing my skills as “not good enough.”
while exemplifying other people’s efforts.

I held conversations in my head
of how I thought people would react
if I said or did this or that.
Consistently holding back my voice,
fearfully agreeing with other people’s conclusions,
not wanting to agitate the peace.

I existed for the high I’d get
if someone fancied my hair
or some different outside appearance
(or the few times an idea I had made its way into the limelight)
others would only get to see the most beneficial results
after many aborted attempts
at my advertised “perfection.”

I worried myself sick
about things that did not concern me.
I’ve done plenty of damage to my self-esteem.
Self-doubt ran dominant in every area of my life.
My unique personality became a backseat rider.

I didn’t know how to advocate for myself;
I kept obsessing over what
other people thought of me.
I was surely fading away;
my dreams didn’t even want to hang around.

Uncomfortable Comfort Zone

This little “safety-net” balloon of mine,
It’s been my comfort zone.
All intimate and complete,
just what I’ve needed to keep me alive
from the inhospitable world outside.
Those were the days of not growing!

Now my comfort zone is
becoming uncomfortable.
I’m jabbing little holes in it daily,
deliberately deflating its deception.

Above The Call of Duty

I’ve always performed above the call of duty
Treating others better than I treat myself.
It’s just who I am.

My 9 to 5 is no different.
I do my best every single day.
I’ll rest when I’ve reached a milestone,
whether work or personal goals,
That’s just how I operate.

I appreciate every opportunity
for growth and self-development.
I recognize the bigger picture.

What People Think

What people assume out loud,
and what they believe in their heads
has nothing to do with you.
Get it out of your system
that you are incomplete.

You are incomparable; you possess extraordinary abilities
Not one soul on this planet
can reproduce (precisely to a “T”).
Labor as they may, it will be
insignificant and to their disadvantage
for you’ve got the number one spot
no one else can snatch it from you;
It’s yours if you want it.

Continue to be you.
Fantastic and all with a few additional perks.
Don’t agonize over those naysayers,
don’t let them stomp on your development.

Go out and conquer the world.
You’ll never please them anyway,
No matter how hard you try.
It’s a fight you’ll never win.

You were born for a purpose.

Losing Grip

And then I seem to overlook what I’m after.
My mind gets fastened on
“what others must think”
That disturbance intimidates me.
Everything I’ve been gaining
in the moment of fear
gets thrown out the window.

My voice shakes; there’s that monstrosity
in my eyes; that green exterior
At that point, I’m no longer
keeping my promises to myself of
challenging every opportunity with confidence.

I want every word I pronounce to furnish the room.
I look forward to the day when I am fearless
enough to stand and command a room.

You Owe It To Yourself

Be your best version.
That’s your destination.
Disregard the “victim” bait.
Entertain no more excuses.
Unique, that’s you.
You shouldn’t want
to duplicate someone else’s shadow.

You owe it to yourself to be great.
Develop your abilities.
Be your number one cheerleader.
Learn to keep your promises to yourself.
It’ll do wonders for your transformation.

Hard-work and discipline,
you’ll need plenty of that.
Your most important opponent
will be your mind.

You Decide

I believe God invested in each of us
A DREAM. With a little excavation,
we can apply its horsepower.
What we achieve with this provision applies to us.
Implement or squander its advantages,
either approach, you have decided.