Declaration (n.)- A formal or explicit statement or announcement.

What do you do? Where are you at now? What does your job entail? Questions that can easily be overheard at any moderately busy happy hour or social gathering. It seems that in an effort to get to know someone, we are now taught to instantly ask about profession, gauge a level of success and then make a snap judgement of exactly who someone is. It almost comes to the point that in our twenties and beyond, we are solely defined by what we do. I often question how fair this is to someone finding their footing in life or maybe exploring all avenues of their abilities. More so, this absolute identity we cast over each other can cause a hesitation in claiming certain titles for ourselves and even limit exploration of what truly makes us happy.

If you aren’t getting paid for it, it’s a hobby.

Words we’ve all heard before. A subtle slap in the face to anyone with the word “aspiring” attached to the front of any title they hope to grasp. Aspiring artists, actors, writers, entrepreneurs and more are all discredited as their level of success doesn’t match the expectation of others. Bullshit. The driving nature of being anything is passion and talent. Some things, you are born to be while others you work diligently and practice to master. Innate talent coupled with patient discipline should warrant the ability to claim your abilities as an identity of self, not how much your bank account benefits of any profession.

The steady hand of doubt.

It is easy to become increasingly frustrated as we compare our journey’s behind the scenes to others’ highlight reels. We constantly see glorified success and praise as we only experience steady struggle and trials. Doubt settles and confidence wavers. What will I amount to? Is this for me? The mind is plagued with self-checking questions giving way to possible abandonment or delay of our calling. If you are truly meant to do anything great, you will at some point doubt your ability to do it. It’s through this doubt where your dedication should remain steadfast. Soon, you’ll sport a confidence in the mastery of what is that you do and what others can’t.

The declaration of self.

Knowing that you are so much more than your current situation allows for an interesting perspective. Truly learning yourself, your intricacies, strengths and weaknesses gives you a better method of navigating this world. Everyone at some point or another has to come to a declaration of self. Who you are, what you like, what you hate, what you can and can’t do. It’s with this you can proudly proclaim what you allow to identify yourself.

My declaration: I am a proud wanderer of the world, a writer of emotion and experience, a child of my ancestors guided by creativity meant to share and to stimulate. I have achieved all that I can and will achieve all that I dream. My confidence is rooted in my discipline, my success is measured in my testimony not social status. I am me.

What’s your declaration of self?




2 thoughts on “The Declaration of Self


  1. Tiffani Allen 9 years ago

    Awesome perspective!

  2. Lauren 9 years ago

    Aliyah- Thanks for sending me this link.

    While I was living in China, I had a lot of time to reflect on aspirations and set goals for myself as to define my daily purpose and combat some of the natural feelings of comparison and defeat that are common throughout our 20s. I too came up with a sorta “Lauren” mission statement that serves as a daily affirmation for myself to help alleviate some of these thoughts.

    “As I grow into the woman God destined me to be I will seek and maintain strong relationships with God, family, and friends building relationships based on love, integrity, and quality time. I will condemn fear, and make way for God’s light, love and passion to guide me to success. May my work always be rooted in uplifting others and creating change, remembering that I must love myself first in order to show love towards others.”

    Additionally, on huffington post there is a lot of talk of defining success through a “third metric”. The articles tend to be pretty enlightening and help to dissolve the “I get money” culture that is overexposed.