Be Like Messi: Ignoring Exernal Negativity and Pursuing Growth

It’s the 18th of December 2022 and Lionel Messi has finally won his World Cup!

Yes Argentina won, but I mean it’s Messi’s World Cup. If you watch football or have any interest in football, or soccer if you’re in America, you will know that Messi is regarded as one of the greatest players that has ever lived. But even with this people always argue that he is not as great as maybe Maradona or he is not as great as Ronaldo from Brazil (not Portugal) because he has never won a World Cup.

I can only imagine how this kind of negative talk can impact one’s performance because the FIFA World Cup is the highest achievement in football that any player can obtain. In that moment when they got to penalties and Argentina’s goalkeeper caught that fourth penalty; the cheering, the joy, the emotion… It showed me that it is important to show up for yourself even when people don’t believe in you. To show up for yourself even when people say you can’t achieve something or even when the world does not recognize the work that you have put in.

There have been many a time when commentators and supporters a like said a lot of negative things about Messi; yet he continuously showed up for himself. He showed up on the field. He showed up for his team. And he delivered. His persistence and perseverance has culminated in him finally winning the World Cup.

As I celebrate his win, I can’t help but look back over this year and realize that so many times I have allowed the perceptions or the negative self-talk of those around me, whether it’s people close to me or even folks that I don’t know, influence how I show up for myself. I have allowed it to influence how I believe in myself and this has shown up in a lot of the work that I do; not only in my writing but also on my YouTube channel.

For a long while I stopped writing and making videos. I stopped not because I didn’t enjoy it or that I’m not passionate about this blog. I love what I do. I love writingand I love talking to you about all the things we talk about every other week. But I got to a point where I was looking at the numbers: I was looking at the visitor count and newsletter subscribers and couldn’t help but ask myself why I continue doing it when it appears I am making no impact.

I stopped for a couple of months and then one day I found myself writing again and it dawned on me that I stopped doing something that I love simply because of other people’s perceptions. I stopped exercising my creative abilities, I stopped channeling all the positivity that I wish to share with the world simply because the numbers weren’t supporting my vision.

I was disappointed I won’t lie.

I was disappointed in myself because I created this blog to motivate others. To make others feel that they belong, to speak about stuff that are uncomfortable. But I realized that I actually wasn’t I was talking the talk, but not walking walk. I was I was actually being kind of a hypocrite because I told everybody around me: Don’t give up on your dreams keep pushing keep doing this and that no matter what people say. I stopped doing what I wanted because of what people said. When I finally started writing again, I felt so much joy. I felt like I was myself again. I felt like a part of me that when dormant finally woke up and that’s when I realized that I can’t allow other people’s perceptions, other people’s views of the world determine how I live my life.

What I have come to realise is that most times what people say is not really towards you. A lot of the time what they’re saying is their perception, but most importantly what they’re saying is usually them projecting their fears on you. So when they’re saying that you’re not talented what they’re actually saying is that “I, the person that’s telling you can’t do it, cannot do what you are doing. Therefore, I am going to tell you that you can’t do it because if I can’t do it surely you can’t do it as well.

It is beyond their comprehension that some people wish to live a life that is fearless; wish to live a life that is constantly in pursuance of the greatest version of themselves. And you can’t blame people. I mean the world has been presented to us in such a manner that we are constantly fearful. We are surrounded by information that says we can’t do something or we fall short in some way, and so we believe it. This ties into consumerism: buy this if you want to be liked and admisred.

But I won’t get into that in this post.

I realized that that negative self-self-talk or the negative outlook had nothing to do with me, but had a lot to do with how other people see the world and how other people processed things. And how people see the world and how people process has no bearing on how creative and how endearing I can be. Therefore, how people perceive and process whatever you create whether it is poetry, whether it is being great at being a lawyer, etc. should not impact how you view yourself and your ability. If anything, when people come to you with negative self-talk, you should see it as kind of affirming that you actually can do it. You know you have the ability to work hard, you have the ability to become that CEO, you have the ability to become a professional swimmer… You have the ability! And it’s sad that people are so afraid of potential.

People are so afraid of those that have ability and are using that ability to change their lives and I believe that if we continue to exist in a way that challenges this negativity, more people would be courageous enough to live life.

I’m quite sure that a lot of people watching today’s game were in awe of Lionel Messi. Messi started playing football at the age of four. After 31 years, at the age of 35, Messi finally lifted the World Cup. Surely then we can take a year, two years, five years, etc to work at whatever we want to do and achieve that goal.

If anything, today showed us that it is possible to achieve what others tell you is impossible. It is possible to live your ultimate dream and you are deserving of that. So don’t allow people’s negative talk to impact the trajectory of your life; especially now during the festive season!

We mingle a lot with family. We share what we’re up to, we share our goals and our dreams. And sometimes we might come across people that you know don’t have the same dreams don’t have the same vision. Or people that are afraid of dreaming, afraid of having visions. And that has nothing to do with us. What we have to do, our job on this earth, is to love authentically, to live outside of other people’s opinions and to achieve everything that we conceive!

And that’s all I wanted to tell you today: Know that you are capable. You’re able. You have the ability. You have the talent. You have the perseverance. Don’t be afraid, you can do it. If Messi can do it, we can do it!

I’ll see you in 2023.