Allow Me To Reintroduce Myself
I’m thrilled to start this weekly column, and what better way to kick off than by getting a bit personal? You see, I’m currently experiencing what feels like a second birth – a journey of rediscovering myself, my style, and my place in this ever-changing world.
As a multi-hyphenate, I’ve worn many hats in my time. But it’s only recently that I’ve truly started to feel at home in my own skin. I guess you could say adulthood has been my awakening. There’s this newfound confidence that comes with knowing who you are, and it’s pretty exhilarating.
Style, for instance, has taken on a new meaning for me. It’s more than just fashion trends; it’s about expressing your unique self in a world where everything can sometimes seem the same, thanks to our social media feeds. Standing out isn’t just about being different; it’s about being true to yourself.
Getting older was the beginning of my unlearning of the shame and guilt in taking pleasure in the way that I dressed and the way I conducted my life. For more than half my life, my body and how I adorned it served to please and be deemed acceptable by others. What I didn’t realize was that the shame I experienced wasn’t my own, but rather that of insecure adults and unhappy peers who were using me to feel good about their own repression, self-induced or otherwise.
This discovery has been the most illuminating experience of my life. Over the past few years, I have given myself permission to be seen. While before I dressed in an inhibited manner, never fully enjoying the extent of pleasure fashion has to offer, I am now beginning to take up space, express unabashed joy, and honour my body in the way I clothe myself. In some ways, it is a return to my childhood ideations of personal style, wanting to look “different” and a bit unusual. Now, when I buy and wear clothes, I look for pieces that can tell their own stories but also seamlessly fit into my own, like a missing puzzle piece.
If you are of the opinion that fashion is a medium of expression, as I am, embracing my personal style of recent has reflected a coming into myself: It’s revelling in the beautifully impractical and eschewing the idea of being ‘overdressed’. It’s being audacious, joyful, and not always practical.
But this column isn’t just about fashion or trends. It’s about life – the whole messy, beautiful journey of it. It’s about learning how to navigate work, relationships, and friendships while staying true to ourselves. It’s about understanding that the real power lies in owning who we are and how we show up in the world every day.
In the workplace, this might mean speaking up and owning our ideas, even when it feels daunting. With friends, it’s about building real and meaningful connections – the kind that support and challenge you in equal measure.
In love and relationships, it’s about finding someone who gets you, someone who adds to your life without overshadowing your individuality. True partnership is about growing together, not losing yourself in the process.
This column isn’t a typical wellness guide, but let’s face it: our sense of self is tied to our well-being. So, each week, let’s explore these ideas together. I hope to offer insights, share stories, and maybe give you a new way to look at the everyday.
Welcome to this journey with me.
Let’s rediscover ourselves, one story at a time.
Ntianu Obiora is a versatile creative professional with over a decade of experience in publishing, marketing, communications, and digital strategy. She is the Online Editor at THEWILL DOWNTOWN