My Hair Does Not Define Who I Am

Is wearing natural hair a professional style? This question is often raised when it comes down to getting a job and interview time. Although my hair does not essentially define who I am, my hair IS a part of me. Accept all of me or none of me, right? I do not intend to be rude about my opinion. I just do not want to work for someone who does not approve of my natural hair. I do not mind the standards of professionalism, but I think natural hair should be accepted as long as it is well-kept and maintained.

In order for you to get a better understanding of why my hair does not define me, I have written a poem that conveys how I view myself and my future. I hope this poem will be an inspiration to someone else. As you read the poem, think about how your natural hair enhances your beauty, but not necessarily affect your goals and aspirations.

 My Hair Does Not Define Who I Am

By: Chekaylah Bradley

I am more than the 4C type

It does not get me where I’m going in life

The kinkiness does not exemplify what I am capable of

Just how I present myself out of love

I am more than the twist outs, braid outs, and wash and go’s

Even more classy than the glamorous afro

I am deeply enriched in intelligence

To support all of my investments

I am more than the olive oil and coconut oil

I’m just in love with my future to which I am loyal

I am concentrated to make it through

Just like the conditioner and shampoo

I am more than the natural hair product

Even though it not working would just be my luck

I am on a bright path towards my future

In which my dreams only need to mature

I am more than the deep conditioning and protein treatments

For my success does not have limits

I am going to be somebody

But I don’t know if the world is ready

I am more than the bad hair days

Because I conquer them in many ways

I am often misunderstood

In fact I knew that I would

I am more than my hair

Including its texture and style that makes people stare

I am only focused on the characteristics and traits that make up my personality

Therefore, my hair does not define who I am most importantly


My self-confidence came with time. Since I have been natural for five years, I have had the time to learn about what makes me who I am and realize the value of my self-worth. The next time someone comments negatively about your hair, tell them that your hair does not define who you are. You are more than what can be seen about you from the outside. The only thing people should worry about is what is on the inside of you, such as your character and personality.

Feel free to share this poem with your friends and family.

Does your natural hair define who you are?

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“Trying On” the Belief That You Are Worthwhile

I recently just started my second semester of my freshman year of college, and I am loving every moment of it to be honest. I am not quite sure if it is because I have finally adjusted to life here at college or because of my class selection, but nonetheless I am still loving it. Here at Temple I am required to take general education courses in addition to the required courses for my major, and I am currently taking a class that studies the concept of interpersonal communication.

In my interpersonal communication class we focus on strengthening our critical thinking, interdisciplinary thinking, and communication skills. At first the concept of the class seemed extremely cliché and cheesy, but I have started to realize that the class is extremely helpful. This week we began covering different strategies that will help to boost and maintain one’s self-esteem, so here are just a few I would like to share with you all that I found most effective:

1) Practice talking to yourself like you are your best friend and give yourself positive affirmations — As corny as this sounds I can not even begin to explain how effective this strategy has proven to be. Just as many other people, especially people of a younger age group, I often find myself picking myself apart and finding things that I necessarily do not like about myself. In order to stop picking myself my apart I have started to look in the mirror for at least 60 seconds every morning and recite positive affirmations. They range from anything to “you’re smart” to “you’re able”, basically anything to aid me in feeling good about myself. Whenever I feel myself doubting myself throughout the day I just remember the affirmations from the morning, and it helps me get through the day.

2)Eliminate all negative self judgements and social comparisons — You can be your biggest critic, and constant criticism of yourself can inhibit your ability to perform at your best. We live in an era where it is so easy to log on to Twitter, Instagram, or any other form of social media and began to compare yourself to others. While social media can be extremely helpful, I think it causes more harm than hurt in this instance. All you can do in your lifetime is be your best you. If you go about comparing yourself to the next person you will never really unlock your full potential and be the best you you can be.

3)Take great care of yourself and give yourself the gift of self-compassion — There is only one you, so take great care of yourself mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Allow time and energy for yourself because you deserve it. Not only should you allot more time for yourself but really get into the habit of investing in yourself.

4)“Try on” the belief that you are completely worthwhile — Last but certainly not least, realize that you ARE worthwhile. You ARE worthy. Too often I find myself convincing myself that I am not good enough for something, whether it be an internship or award I tend to think that I am simply not good enough. Lately, I have been getting myself out of this way of thinking because I am worthy of all things good as are you 🙂


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