Boitumelo Vero Rikhotso

Destined for greatness!

MYTH #3 – This is how I am  January 14, 2016

Filed under: Life — Boitumelo Vero Rikhotso @ 5:30 am

If there was one thing that made boot camp difficult apart from the pressures of training and little sleep, it would have to be personalities. We were a group of about 100 trainees, from all walks of life and all women. What an interesting experience!

Sharing space isn’t the easiest thing in the world to do especially having to share bedrooms, bathrooms, mess, laundry room and classroom with diverse people (strangers) from diverse backgrounds with diverse ideas on how to speak, to clean, to eat and generally to live with others. Never in my life have I had to learn so much about myself and bite my tongue like when I was at bootcamp. Not even when I was married did I have to do that much soul searching and internalizing – maybe that was the problem lol. I digress…

When there were disagreements, most people resorted to the reason ‘that’s how I am.’ Perhaps so but when you’re not living on your own, in your own space with people who tolerate you, one needs to be more considerate and understanding. Some who were perhaps louder than others when told to perhaps reduce the volume would say ‘this is how I am, I speak loudly’ or ‘its my culture.’ 

Another would say ‘this is how I am, ndiyaphoxana mina’ (I’m snubby) and yet another would say ‘please don’t talk to me like that because I have a small heart and I get angry quickly.’ I also had my own issues of being impatient and I had to learn to be intentional in reciting patience in my head when dealing with a person whom I considered rather slow.

This showed me that I had pride because I thought of myself better than another one. Just because I was good at something, it didn’t mean someone struggling was stupid. Of course I wouldn’t call anyway stupid but in being impatient with someone struggling, I was subconsciously thinking better of myself. What an aha moment for me to practice more patience and more love. How God must look down on us and just shake His head sometimes…

When God reveals to us who we really are and chooses to love us anyway, it’s overwhelming. So overwhelming in fact you just want to repay Him by loving others. Never again will I say, ‘this is how I am, get used to it.’ When we say that, I believe we rob ourselves of an opportunity to become better people and be more pleasant. 

I remember one lady who was in her late 40’s and concerned about not having a life partner. When we just shared with her about how she came across as rude often times when speaking, perhaps not intentionally, she duely informed us that ‘that’s how I am and that man must just love me like that.’ Perhaps she’s right in that she should be loved as she is, however, it doesn’t mean we cannot improve in our communication skills more especially in dealing considerably with others. Granted, you have no control over how a person receives what you say, but you have full control of what you say and how you say it.

One of the things I was known to be a broken record as saying at bootcamp whenever someone said ‘this is how I am’ was ‘it is not a deformity, it is something that can be worked on.’ Everyone who knows me pretty well will tell you I’m a chatterbox. Yes I speak a lot, but no one at boot camp described me that way. In fact most people said I was reserved. I was conscious of my tendency to speak a lot and made a decision to be more careful about what I said, when and to whom. I proved to myself that ‘this is how I am’ is the easy way out, perhaps even a cop out. 

I stand by my words…

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One Response to “MYTH #3 – This is how I am ”

  1. Senie Says:

    Very inspiring Rikhokho👏👏👏👏👏!
    Maybe I never got a chance to tell you this but I learned a lot from you, your life stories that you shared with me made me see life differently. Some of the things you thought me without knowing is;
    1.To put your happiness 1st no matter what is the situation( not necessarily being selfish ).
    2. To forget about “what people will say” & do what is right.
    3. That there is life after divorce.
    4. To put God 1st in every situation.

    I use to say at the college I can write a book about the things I learned from there, pity I don’t have writing skills. But I relate to all the things you writing about it feels like it’s me writing.
    Keep up the good work of inspiring others through your writing!!

    I salute you my Col✋✋


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