Do I Belong? The Impact of Stereotypes

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do i belong stereotypes behind the schmile differences

We typically view stereotypes in a negative light but more often than we realise, stereotypes are what bring us comfort. Stereotypes can be grounds for false judgement and negative misconceptions, but they can also arouse feelings of belonging.

As with most things in life, the unfortunate truth is that humans don’t struggle to identify a bad thing. But we are quick to turn a blind eye if that bad thing works out in our favour. But when things aren’t to our advantage, we are always quick to find blame and excuses.

Being uncomfortable is a part of change

When times got tough and confusion set in, I blamed stereotypes. I found myself questioning my life at that point because I didn’t fit the standard. Despite ticking all of the necessary boxes, my inability to fulfil a certain stereotype made me feel out of place. This is another reason Representation Matters.

Without beating around the bush, I’ll put my situation in simple terms for you. At times, I felt like the ‘token black girl’. This wasn’t the case. I got the grades I needed, I went through the same set of interviews and smashed the same assessment centre as everyone else! I was just the only one that looked like this and so my Imposter Syndrome started to seep through and cause me to question how much I deserved what I had.

Often, insecurities and self-doubt are rooted in the stereotypes manipulated by other people. When we allow such negative thoughts to hold a significant place in our lives, we are at risk of blocking the blessings God has laid out before us.

God has a plan

I’ve learnt to recognise when I’m in a place that God has put me in. When God has placed you somewhere He’ll let you know. Problem is, in these cases I often feel as though I don’t belong. Here’s why:

When I have worked hard and persevered to achieve something, it is likely that I desired to be there. No-one has a desire to be in a place where they feel they won’t fit in- your subconscious has already taken a full assessment of the standards and stereotypes and decided that you’re a good fit. Therefore, you’re free to pursue whatever it may be, with the confidence that once you reach the end goal; you’ll be in a place where you belong.

However, when God plants me somewhere, the chance to validate such is gone and so I feel out of place. But does this mean that I don’t belong?

The simple answer is no. You may have heard the saying “When God wants you to grow, He makes you uncomfortable”

Do i belong behind the schmile stereotypes when god wants you to grow he makes You uncomfortable

“And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.” Luke 9:23

Seasons will test you

Where He may have placed you at this point in time, in which you feel you don’t belong, may not be the final destination. I can guarantee that there are lessons laid out for you to learn during this season. Being a follower of Christ and taking up a daily cross means that things will be difficult. Try to remember this during trials and tribulations.

I’m not suggesting that you will never feel comfortable in the places God has led you to. But I want you to remember that when God’s favour is upon you and He guides you somewhere, being obedient to His plans for you will eventually lead you to peace, joy and fulfilment.

Don’t let stereotypes mislead you or throw you off track.

Grow in the comfort of being uncomfortable.

Accept that if God has placed you there, you most certainly do belong!

All the best,

Tisha x

#Schmile

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100 Comments

  1. October 22, 2017 / 10:45 am

    This is a good post to uplift my spirit right now. Thanks for sharing.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 22, 2017 / 2:10 pm

      Happy to hear this! Thank you for your support! 🙂

  2. October 22, 2017 / 10:46 am

    Well, life required me to move to the other side of the world and lost the life that I had built for 16 yrs. I still don’t understand God’s plan with uprooting my life and planting me back here. It is definitely uncomfortable. My faith took a major beating for a while. But, like you said, there is a purpose for each trial and He has a plan to prosper us, not harm us.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 22, 2017 / 2:11 pm

      So glad you know that there is a reason behind this change -God never leaves us! Thank you for reading x

  3. October 22, 2017 / 11:27 am

    You’re so right about certain seasons testing you! I went through a season like that last year and although it left me stronger it definitely was tiring.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 22, 2017 / 2:12 pm

      I can’t wait for the strength part lol- thanks for reading! x

  4. Shariyka Riley-Romero
    October 22, 2017 / 2:14 pm

    You’re absolutely right about when God wants you to grow, he makes you uncomfortable. You can’t grow in an environment that’s not conducive to your growth.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 22, 2017 / 2:50 pm

      Thank you so much for reading💙

  5. October 22, 2017 / 2:35 pm

    Man you nailed this!!!
    I used to struggle with this point as well about being comfortable with being uncomfortable…growth does not happen in our comfort zones so while yes it is painful now, you will be better because of the trial/tribulation. Let God work in and through you…and I promise the end result will be more than you could have ever imagined…again I really enjoyed this piece! Keep letting the Lord use you!

    • TishaKimiira
      October 22, 2017 / 2:51 pm

      Thank you so much for your feedback!!! I really appreciate this! God bless💙💙💙

  6. October 22, 2017 / 3:23 pm

    Great read. Often. navigating predominantly non-Black spaces as a Black woman will leave us tired, on edge, and insecure due to systemic racism and racial microaggressions. It’s something we feel like we can’t escape and have to be looking over our shoulders constantly. This was great advice given at the end.

    Kendro

    • TishaKimiira
      October 22, 2017 / 3:31 pm

      Thank you so much for reading! Glad you can relate and happy it was helpful!💙

  7. October 22, 2017 / 3:53 pm

    WOW VEry motivating and uplifting!! God’s plans are always better than our own! Thank you for Sharing!!

    • TishaKimiira
      October 22, 2017 / 5:18 pm

      Thank you for reading! Glad you enjoyed it 😊

  8. October 22, 2017 / 5:17 pm

    What an awesome post.. You are certainly right in every way. Glad I came across this.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 22, 2017 / 5:19 pm

      Pleased to hear this! Thanks for reading 😊

  9. October 22, 2017 / 7:02 pm

    Oh it is so true about seasons testing you! I had a very hard time in my personal life with certain relationships last year and although it was painful, it has left me stronger. I know there’s a plan and we often look back in hindsight and realise it.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 22, 2017 / 7:11 pm

      So glad to hear that you’re stronger!!! Thank you for reading- I appreciate your comment💙

  10. October 22, 2017 / 10:45 pm

    Great perspective. Change definetly requires us to be uncomfortable. If you don’t fail first then you weren’t reaching high enough in the first place. Great blog!

    • TishaKimiira
      October 22, 2017 / 10:52 pm

      “If you don’t fail first then you weren’t reaching high enough” love this! Thank you for reading💙

  11. October 22, 2017 / 11:53 pm

    Thank you for expressing the syndrome associated with feeling like the token black girl. It was insightful knowing what to finally coin it. Seasons are given for strength. Keep striving. Great read.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 23, 2017 / 12:04 am

      Happy it was useful! Thank you! 🙂

  12. October 22, 2017 / 11:55 pm

    This is so true. I was going though a time where I wanted to leave so bad and didn’t because I knew it wasn’t the right time. It definitely confirms the word in church today. Sometimes when you go out of the Will of God or even go when you’re not ready, you can put yourself in a lot more trouble or jeopardize other’s life in the process. ie Jonah on his way to Tarshish

    • TishaKimiira
      October 23, 2017 / 12:06 am

      This is the perfect example! What God has sent us to do many not always sit well with us but there is a purpose much greater than what we can imagine! Thank you for sharing! :)x

  13. vsthomps
    October 23, 2017 / 2:53 am

    I deal with feeling that I don’t belong at times so thank you for this. I use and affirmation when I’m in this mindset: “I never enter a room that I don’t belong.” This affirms my worthiness.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 23, 2017 / 9:32 am

      I love this idea and will definitely be trying it! Thank you for sharing!💙

  14. October 23, 2017 / 6:16 am

    This is so important. Thanks for sharing

  15. October 23, 2017 / 12:40 pm

    I loved what you said about if God wants to.elevate He makes you uncomfortable. This is such an encouragement.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 23, 2017 / 12:50 pm

      So glad it encouraged you! Thank you for reading 💙

    • TishaKimiira
      October 23, 2017 / 1:40 pm

      So happy to hear this! Thank you for reading 💙

  16. October 23, 2017 / 2:29 pm

    Good morning Tisha. I thought you were talking to me. Felt the scenario in my life. I’m feeling uncomfortable with the steps it looks like I have to take. But I’m being guided in a direction I did not expect. But I feel like this direction is my blessing.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 23, 2017 / 5:21 pm

      A blessing in disguise! I’ve been there- trust me you’ll come out stronger! Wishing you all the best! Thank you for reading- I hope it was helpful! 🙂 x

  17. October 23, 2017 / 4:47 pm

    This was a good post and exactly what I needed today! I have this same struggle being the youngest and only black AGM in my company but I am striving and shining for everything I have worked for. Great post!

    • TishaKimiira
      October 23, 2017 / 5:22 pm

      Thank you so much- glad you could relate! Keep shining!!!

  18. October 23, 2017 / 4:59 pm

    This post speaks to my heart. very uplifting. God definitely has a plan for us and we only need to chose to let His will be done in our lives.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 23, 2017 / 5:23 pm

      Obedience is difficult but so necessary! Thank you so much for reading! 🙂 x

  19. October 23, 2017 / 6:57 pm

    I am the walking, talking version of the anti stereotype. Ninety percent of my interests and demeanor typically come off as a surprise and it’s frustrating but also fun. I see how stereotypes are comfortable but I tend to do things to get out of my comfort zone often as possible.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 23, 2017 / 7:24 pm

      Stepping out of your comfort zone is probably one of the best ways to learn and grown! Thanks for reading x

  20. Jasmine - The Crowning Glory
    October 24, 2017 / 2:40 am

    I loved this post. Even in the mist of a stormy season I can still find peace in knowing that I’m still protected by God. 💜

    • TishaKimiira
      October 24, 2017 / 10:16 am

      Always!!! Thank you for reading- so glad you loved it!!!💙

  21. moniqueclark427
    October 24, 2017 / 10:35 am

    Very inspiring words! Great read! Always keep going through the dark times!

    • TishaKimiira
      October 24, 2017 / 10:37 am

      Thank you!💙

  22. lacyngo
    October 24, 2017 / 11:04 am

    I love what you said about God making us uncomfortable when God wants us to grow. I am sorry you have felt like you didn’t belong though. I am glad you realize you did belong and that you were where God wanted you to be.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 24, 2017 / 12:29 pm

      Thank you so much for your support! I hope you enjoyed reading 🙂 x

  23. October 24, 2017 / 11:55 am

    What an impactful, insightful story. Women of color are in a world where we are always fighting to find our place.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 24, 2017 / 12:30 pm

      We’ll get there eventually! Thank you for reading! 🙂 x

  24. October 24, 2017 / 1:21 pm

    This was so well written! I can totally relate to these feelings as we have decided to raise our kids in a suburb where they are the minority by far.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 24, 2017 / 1:36 pm

      Thank you so much! Wishing you the best for your kids! They’ll be stronger for it!💙

  25. October 24, 2017 / 1:46 pm

    This was a nice read. I am an atheist but I believe in your faith.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 24, 2017 / 1:51 pm

      Appreciate that! Thanks for reading 💙

  26. Joyce Marie
    October 25, 2017 / 2:02 am

    Ahhhh I love this so much! Thanks for sharing your heart, you’re def not the only one nor are you the only one that has felt like the “token black girl”. It’s beautiful to see the lessons you’ve learned and the growth that you are experiencing as a result.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 25, 2017 / 8:44 am

      So glad you could relate! Thank you so much for sharing!💙

  27. October 25, 2017 / 3:10 am

    Wow I have really been needing this. God is so good.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 25, 2017 / 8:45 am

      All the time!!! 🙌🏽Thanks for reading💙

  28. October 27, 2017 / 11:30 am

    I agree with you 100%, I have seen growth in a season of my life when I was the most uncomfortable. God truly does great work during those times. God bless you for sharing 🙂

    • TishaKimiira
      October 27, 2017 / 3:45 pm

      So glad you can relate! God bless you too! Thanks for reading 💙

  29. Sheena Steward
    October 27, 2017 / 4:22 pm

    This was great and I needed to read it. I was just talking about stereotypes and being a token. I hate being put in a box.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 27, 2017 / 6:10 pm

      So happy to hear it was of use! Thanks for reading 💙

  30. October 27, 2017 / 8:35 pm

    Well written! There is a season for everything and everyone. Stereotypes are an easy way to deflect and place blame on the blameless. As well as, deflecting ones own self doubt and insecurities to try and make others look bad. Thank you so much for sharing!

    • TishaKimiira
      October 27, 2017 / 8:58 pm

      So happy you got it- this is exactly what I was trying to say! Thank you so much for reading! I appreciate your feedback! 🙂 x

  31. Autum Love
    October 27, 2017 / 8:59 pm

    this post was very much needed!! Confirmation thank you for sharing 🙂

    • TishaKimiira
      October 27, 2017 / 9:00 pm

      So pleased it was relevant and helpful!!! Appreciate the support! 🙂 x

  32. October 27, 2017 / 9:25 pm

    This is a beautiful share. Thank you for letting us see your heart.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 27, 2017 / 9:55 pm

      I really appreciate this! Thank you for reading 💙

  33. October 28, 2017 / 9:07 am

    This was such a powerful read. Loved every bit of it. The amazing thing is when we become new creations of God, we are no longer what anyone says we are. We are what God wants us to be.

  34. October 28, 2017 / 3:51 pm

    Everything in this is so true! God always has a plan and will take you through anything if you just listen. Thanks so much for sharing this beautiful reminder.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 28, 2017 / 11:48 pm

      Thank you so much for reading! So glad it was helpful!

  35. October 29, 2017 / 4:12 am

    Everything about this post! Thank you so much for this inspirational feature 😍

    • TishaKimiira
      October 29, 2017 / 9:05 am

      Thank you so much!💙

  36. Carissa (The Green Eyed Lady)
    October 29, 2017 / 4:25 pm

    “When God wants you to grow, he makes you Uncomfortable” YES!!!! This was an amazing post…thanks for sharing!

    • TishaKimiira
      October 29, 2017 / 6:16 pm

      Thank you so much for reading- hope you were blessed!💙

  37. October 29, 2017 / 5:36 pm

    I felt like the token black girl” on several occasions. Thank you for this post. It helped a lot!

    • TishaKimiira
      October 29, 2017 / 6:16 pm

      So happy to hear this! Thank you for reading!💙

  38. October 29, 2017 / 7:17 pm

    Thanks for the inspiration . Nothing is ever going wrong . We are always exactly where we are supposed to be 🙌🏾😄

    • TishaKimiira
      October 29, 2017 / 7:36 pm

      You’re welcome! Thank you for reading! 🙂

  39. October 29, 2017 / 10:19 pm

    This post is so inspiring and ON POINT! I always say comfort leads to complacency AKA no growth! Great read.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 29, 2017 / 10:23 pm

      Thank you so much!💙

  40. October 29, 2017 / 10:26 pm

    What a great and inspiring post! I too have felt as if I don’t belong at times and this is quite the uplifting post for anyone that feels that way.

    Kimberly Love

    • TishaKimiira
      October 29, 2017 / 10:32 pm

      Thank you luvie!💙

  41. terrihugg
    October 29, 2017 / 11:10 pm

    I loved this. If you’re feeling uncomfortable you know you’re heading for growth,

    • TishaKimiira
      October 29, 2017 / 11:14 pm

      Thank you for reading!

  42. October 30, 2017 / 6:29 am

    I agree. Stereotypes would prevent us from experiencing all that is good for us if we let them. I am not here for it. I will not let others steal my joy.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 30, 2017 / 8:56 am

      Love that! Won’t let anyone or anything steal my joy! Thank you for reading 💙

  43. October 30, 2017 / 1:30 pm

    I used to HATE being the only one in the room, and I figured that I’d escape stereotypes at an HBCU, but they are everywhere sadly, just different. I just keep focusing on being me…

    • TishaKimiira
      October 30, 2017 / 4:49 pm

      Focusing on yourself is the best way to go! Thanks for reading! 🙂

  44. October 30, 2017 / 5:34 pm

    I think if you are in a particular place, God wants you there. Sometimes we don’t understand why we are in a place, that is when you tell God I don’t understand but let me know what I should be doing or how can I help someone in the process.

    • TishaKimiira
      October 30, 2017 / 5:43 pm

      Completely agree with this! Thank you so much for reading 💙

  45. Kimifanpage
    October 30, 2017 / 6:03 pm

    Thank you for sharing! We love you. X

    • TishaKimiira
      October 30, 2017 / 6:43 pm

      Love you more!!!💙

  46. staciesayzso
    November 1, 2017 / 12:21 pm

    I believe that God makes plans for us and often has us right where we need to be.

    • TishaKimiira
      November 1, 2017 / 1:03 pm

      100% agree! Thank you for stopping by!💙

  47. November 3, 2017 / 8:56 pm

    You’re right about stereotypes, it can be good and bad but how we let it affect us is what matters most. You touched on different things that make so much sense. Thanks for sharing.
    sewafolie.com

    • TishaKimiira
      November 3, 2017 / 9:44 pm

      So glad you enjoyed it! Thanks for reading x

  48. Belinda
    November 9, 2017 / 1:47 pm

    So right that they are both positive and negative. Thanks for a great read.

  49. November 10, 2017 / 11:20 pm

    #Truth You are so right, your current situation/challenge is not the final destination or outcome. What doesn’t kill us, definitely make us stronger.

    • TishaKimiira
      November 11, 2017 / 12:34 am

      Thank you for reading!!!💙

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