For some of us, life is a breeze. For others, it’s a constant storm - like being born with bad karma, where rough times are their unfortunate reality. I know these wounded people… I was one of them. Often discouraged from hoping for a better life. I didn’t ask to be born into such harsh conditions, and I could not understand why I was chosen to endure them.
The meaning behind the title, “Life In Its Rawest Form”, came from my experience growing up under circumstances that were raw and uncut. These experiences were raw in the fact that they were in the barest, most explicit form. Nothing was there to sugar coat them or protect me from the brutal reality or its true ugliness.
My purpose in writing this book is that I know there are others who may have lived a life in its rawest form, that may not have ended in triumph. My hope is that through my books; through the voice behind the pain, tragedy, and victory, something will give others, who may be living through similar circumstances, hope and inspiration that will help them prevail and triumph!
In addition to those facing similar circumstances, I pray that my book will give insight to family service professionals, therapists, educators, and others on how their help and support can make a positive difference in the lives of children and families facing adversity.
Reading can change lives. People helping people change lives. #LifeInItsRawestForm
As a teen, eventually, I got enough courage to accept that I am different because I chose different options. I tried not to take certain situations for granted because I realize one bad choice could lead me down the same path as everyone else.
I always told my peers that they, too, could change their lives for the better, just by pushing themselves a little harder. Nothing I did was impossible or something that they couldn’t do. They just had to want it.
I couldn’t’ allow myself to be concerned with the choices others made or didn’t make. Although I wanted better for my peers, I couldn’t lose focus on the things I needed to do for the betterment of myself. I would help them along the way as much as I could, but they had to put in the work for themselves. If they chose not to, that was their choice and not mine.
My choice to get off the Merry Go Round (See the Hood Habits entry of my blog for additional context) landed me in the position I am in today. I used previous challenges and examples from others as a way for me decide what choices to make and what choices not to make. I realized that in order to be successful and to create a brighter future for myself, I had to put in the work. No one else could do it for me.
I hope to encourage young women and men to make wise choices and take control of their lives. My life is a testimony and I am grateful to be able to share it.
See the speaking page of the website to book your speaking engagement.
As a #teen, eventually, I got enough #courage to #accept that I was #different. I no longer allowed my #peers #negativity take a hold of me. My life is a #livingtestimony and I am #grateful to share it. I’m available for #speaking engagements this #summer and eager to #influence some of our #young people. Visit the Speaking page of www.qianahicks.com to learn more. #LifeinitsRawestForm #Speaker #Author #Overcomer #Faith
Daring to be different can be viewed in many different ways. Some may choose to be different for all of the wrong reasons, and others may choose to be different to improve their quality of life. In the context of breaking the cycle and not conforming, being different is viewed in one way – the better way.
Choosing to be different will require you to be confident and unapologetic. You have to be 100% certain and comfortable with your decision to be different, otherwise, you may get deterred and end up conforming, just like everyone else. There will be consequences (good and bad) that comes along with choosing to be different. Some of the things you should expect on your journey to be different are: envy from others – even from those closest to you, being singled out, becoming a target of unpleasant treatment, or feeling like you don’t belong - which isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
Developing confidence and an open mind to overcome the adversity you will face might pave the way for others. There are people, probably more than you may know, who also wants to be different by choosing a better path, but lacks the courage to do so. Your courageousness and unapologetic qualities may just be what it takes to give them that.
When you choose to be different to better your life, and the lives of others, you should also prepare for the positive that comes along with. Contrary to the not so good consequences, striving for better will naturally render positive results. Your quality of life will improve by the choices you make, your behavior, the people you choose to associate with, and your overall mindset. All of which are benefits of daring to be different.
Never feel guilty about your choice to break the cycle by choosing a different, better path. This should never discourage you from doing what is right for you or a loved one.
We’re ultimately responsible for taking control of our own destiny and not allowing ourselves to be influenced by our surroundings. Being different is actually a form of obligation; obligation to yourself that if you know better, you should do better!
We may not be able to control others’ actions, but we can control how we let their actions affect our lives. I was driven to seek a better education and better options for myself, and others treated me differently. With more education, I saw things in a new light, and I made smarter choices. There were people I grew up with or who lived in the same community as me who perceived it as if I thought I was better than them. I was told that I think I’m “white” or that I act “white”, just because my vocabulary or pronunciation was different than the majority of those from my neighborhood. I didn’t think I was better than anyone else, I was simply being me, and making the best of the opportunities available to me.
Dare to be different and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise! This is your life to live and you can’t go through it worrying about what other people think of you. Love yourself first and the rest will follow…
Daring to be different will not only change your life, but it can also change the lives of a community.