Knowing Your Worth | Fardousa Jama | TEDxGustavusAdolphusCollege


Translator: Shehab El-Hariry
Reviewer: Denise RQ Do you know your self-worth? Stay with it for a little bit.
Think about it. Do you know how much you’re valued? We have a society that labels us
from everything that you can think of. When you look at me, immediately,
what society labels me is ‘unhealthy’ because I am a big girl,
and I look fabulous. (Laughter) As well as coming fro a torn-war country
to where I am today. I ask you again, “Do you know your self-worth?” Because for me, it took a lot for me
to stand here and say, “I am worth something. I am valued.” Because society has labeled me
not only unhealthy but unfit. Also, as you can see,
I wear my religion with pride, and I am constantly told
that I am a terrorist, or I should go back to my country. But I ask you again,
“Do you know your worth?” Because today, I stand
in front of you knowing my worth, saying that I am not a terrorist, but I am a fabulous person
who is unhealthy and not size zero but still, could put a smile
on a face and say, “Hey, everybody.” (Laughter) Also, to be where I am today
coming from a torn-war country, speaking bilingual, and helping others
who feel they don’t deserve to be here, and all around me being told no, kind of gets a girl down a little bit. So, looking at the word ‘engage,’
I start to engage myself. What does it mean to me to be who I am to stand in front of you
to share what I’ve learned? Two principles. Very simple. Negative thoughts,
people, actions, things that do affect how we think,
act, and react at things. When somebody looks at me
and says I am terrorist, I look at them and say,
“When have you seen me be one?” If I literally walked away
with that label on me, then I allow society to be
in control of my own happiness. But again, I am the only one
that’s in charge of my own happiness. Not them nor anyone else
that is around us. Getting to my point of positive thinking
is you think, you act. When you act, you start to behave it
and mimic those things that you feed into, and what society tell us to feed into, whether you’re a girl
who’s dating a douchebag, or you’re a man who’s dating
another douchebag. But at the end of the day, it is how
we respect and how we value ourselves. When you start to think positive,
opportunities open and doors open. Who wins? The society wins or do you win? Do you engage yourself first or do you allow society
to engage with you? Or do you start that within knowing your worth, knowing your value,
and how important you are? I think I am kind of on a track, right? Moving on the second principle:
not only are you positive thinking but you’re also giving time
to self-love yourself. If you don’t love
yourself first, who will? If you don’t take care
of yourself, who will? Who will come in through the door and say, “Hey. I’m going to be you savior today. I am going to lift you up
and treat you better. Do you think they’re going
to walk through that door? Sad to say, no. Caring about yourself and loving
yourself first is very, very important. It really is, because our parents
teach us to treat others the way they deserve to be treated, but we forget we need
to start treating ourselves the way we want to treat ourselves, to give caring, and love,
and respect to ourselves first before somebody else
could give that to us, We can’t build a house with no foundation. We can’t step in trough door and say,
“I’m here to engage myself today,” when we don’t have self-love,
or self-care, or self-respect first. Agree? Fardousa Jama: I can’t hear you all.
(Audience) Yes. FJ: Awesome. So I ask you again, “What have you done
today to engage yourself? What have you done
to put a smile on your face?” Because it’s not that hard
to put a smile on your face because we do it every morning when we wake up
and stand in front of the mirror. Because we go up, and we wash our face, grab our toothpaste,
and we’re standing up there; we’re going like this. Why not just keep it there? (Laughter) It’s free, right? Make yourself smile every morning. Anyways, at the bottom of it, I know who I am, and what I stand for, or my value others’ respect
because I respect myself first. I don’t wait for respect
to walk through that door, and I don’t allow societies,
negativities, and the way they move, or the weight of what they say
about who I am or what my religion is to define me as a human being. You know what defines me? Myself: my worth, my value, and what I stand for
in front of you today. So I ask you again,
each and every one of you, “What is your worth?
What is your value? Are you ready to walk across
that bridge and meet that girl or that guy standing there with a smile
on their faces?” “Hey! Been here all day.” Or do you just sit around and say,
“I am not worth nothing,” or “I don’t value myself
the way I should.”? Because if you are
in that spot, the truth is the only person who knows
how much they’re worth or who can start
engaging themselves is you. Nobody else. You first. First, think of positive thinking
and self-love. When you think of those two things,
you know who you are, and what you’re worth,
and what you value. And you force others to treat you the way you should have
treated yourself to begin with. Thank you. (Applause)

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