This sentence has shattered so many lives. It’s the subconscious voice we hear each time we do something that would derail us from our normal routine. The sooner we realize that people will always have something to say the faster we can move on. Whether we remain stagnant in the same position for the rest of our lives or take one brave step somebody, somewhere, somehow will have something to say.
The question I normally ask is who are ‘they?’ and why does what they have to say about us have such a significant impact on our lives. Firstly, these are the people we have never even met in person and most probably would just walk pass by in Wernhil. These are our Facebook friends, Instagram followers, snap chatters and basically the cyber world we created.
They all have no significant value to our lives but because we have welcomed them into our world through the pictures and videos we posted, they are now part of our lives.
At times they even know more about us than our own family members. They know who we are dating, what we had for dinner, where we live or attend school and even the colour of our bedrooms.
If you noticed I used the pronoun ‘we’ frequently, because I too fall part of the cyber culture and at times too much of my private information has gone public. So when that relationship fails or I no longer have KFC for dinner, I am offline for nearly three months. Because what will my followers say if I upload a picture with a plate of ‘pap en melk.’
However this isn’t where the sentence ends as in varsity. The number of things people have to say is never ending. The Namibian youth has adopted what I would like to refer to as “brand culture”. You can be the cleanest and freshest one in the group but if you’re not dressed in Nike, Adidas or Puma you haven’t made it. I often read peoples comments on Facebook stating “tah Emily that shoe is fire.”
Meanwhile you need to soak your feet in salt water when you get home as those shoes hurt your feet but who cares when you look like flames. And because of this your shoe will be the talk of town and it will now give you a new identity.
You now have to remain consistent and by far this is the most challenging part. You have now created an image that you need to up hold. And you want people to keep complimenting your shoe game. For the first three months or so you will keep up with the appearance and even score a few new friends. Squad goals have been achieved. You and your squad get 600 likes on Facebook, 200 comments and 50 shares. You made it in life!
But what happens when you can’t afford to wear those Nike shoes anymore and your fame fades. You need to get with the program and revert to your ‘tommy takkie’ days. And not only are they more comfortable but they are cheaper. Here’s a surprise no one really cared and life went on. People may no longer compliment your shoes but you are much comfortable and there’s no pressure.
What people say about you in the cyber world is irrelevant focus on the people in your real life.