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Sunday, 4 November 2012

To your own self be true

Facebook and writing a blog has taught me to develop a thick skin. I write and share my opinions on a range of topics. However, the fundamental lesson I've learned is the hardening of my belief that first and foremost, a writer writes for themselves, and then shares their own believes and convictions. If you ever write solely for your audience, you'll lose your authentic voice as you seek to tailor yourself to please different opinions.

I have been told I am too serious, while also being told by others that I am not serious enough. My Christianity has been called too liberal, while others call it too conservative. I have been called dogmatic, while also being told I lack conviction. Some say I write too much about JESUS, while others say I do not mention JESUS enough. I have been called funny while others say I am boring. I have been called anti-women, while others have said I am anti-men. I have been called a feminist while others have said I am anti-feminist and shoving women back into the dark ages. I have been called a GEJ critic, while some have called me a GEJ supporter, I have been told I clearly love Nigeria while others have called me a traitor for living abroad. I have been told I am slim enough now & should stop the weight loss plan while some have said I am still too fat and need to work hard at it.

Humble, arrogant, too British, too Nigerian, too talkative, too quiet, friendly, reserved, etc etc etc. The dichotomy of views have sometimes made me laugh out loud!

I look at the above and I wonder who it is some of these peeps are talking about. My convictions are flexible while being rigid. I can see both sides of the argument, and if I want I can argue both opposing views convincingly & passionately. Most of the time, I believe the right solution is a combination of ideas and viewpoints. Life is rarely black and white in my book but is many shades of grey. However, there are also fundamental truths I will not shift on. I am as grateful to those who praise my writing as I am to those who critique it and sometimes disparage or mock it.

Speak with your own voice. Stand for the truth you believe. Never ever worry if you are the only one who holds a viewpoint. If you truly believe it, then don't follow the crowd. Peer pressure is subtle but insidious - shrug it off. Don't seek adulation or the approval of men. The same crowd that loves you today can stone you tomorrow. 

Be true to yourself always. 

xx

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