At what point do you stop looking for approval? My entire life I’ve been concerned with what others thought of me because I wasn’t secure enough in myself. Funny enough, it is when I decided to “deadlock” my hair that I finally began to accept me. It was the most permanent thing I had ever done. For those of you who are not familiar with dreadlocks, (I prefer to call my crown “locs” but that may be a discussion for another post.) The process works by twisting your hair and the hair eventually because tangled and essentially matted. The only way to go back, is to cut your hair at the root. Once I made the decision, there was this relief. In that moment, I decided to do something for me. I was no longer trying to impress. It’s kind of interesting to feel your most vulnerable and your most powerful at the same time. But I did. I was exposed, unsure of how this new style would look on me but yet empowered by the strength to make the decision.
Similarly here I am months later vulnerable again because I’m in the process of starting two businesses. Though I’m confident in myself and my ideas I look to family and friends for input. I’ve heard good feedback, warranted criticisms and great advice. But I’ve also received things that I would much rather not hear. I started to think about this Jay Z song I love to listen to.
“Even betters what my uncle did,
I pop my demo tape in start to beat my head,
Peaked out my eye, see if he was beating his,
He might as well say beat it kid, he’s on the list”
He speaks of having his uncle listen to one of his first songs. Picture a young Jay Z looking up at this man waiting to hear him say how great it sounded. But he never did. That’s how I felt when I told some very important people my business plans, a childlike disappointment. But that disappointment never turned to doubt instead it became fuel. I might never be anything beyond the words that are on this post but what I will do is continue to dream and strive for the things I want in life. I ask you to do the same, I ask you to dare to be exactly who you want to be.
-A Woman in Process