I received the following message on the WAOD Facebook Fan Page about Kim Kardashian and Kanye West and it’s an excellent demonstrative example to kick off our series on the The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People . The first habit of highly effective people is BE PROACTIVE.
I want to ask you if i'm trippin for being so disgusted by this kanye kim baby all over the media. i dont expect anything more from her, but it hurts to see him and the media validate her in front of young black girls. basically hes sayin anyone, even an uneducated, incestuous, porn star is better than every sista on the planet... after he repeated tried to make himself the spokes person for black people. and nobody seems to be offended by this stunt but they were so outraged over his other antics. its like im in the twilight zone. am i trippin? Concerned WAOD Reader
Thank you for your message concerned reader. It provides all of us with an excellent opportunity to use this to work the First Habit: Be Proactive.
Being “proactive” doesn’t mean what you think it means. It doesn’t mean being a woman of action. In some cases, it calls on you to be a woman of great restraint. What being proactive means is being responsible for your own life. Instead of reacting to circumstances and how you “feel.” A proactive person is driven to act or “respond” based on a set of core values. Doesn’t matter what the circumstances are, how you respond is based on what you believe. A reactive person however, twists in the wind responding to every change in circumstances, conditions and environments.
Too wonky for you? Another way to say this is being proactive means you stop letting life happen to you. You stop being a zombie. You stop being a victim, and you stop being a slave to your feelings.
Based on this email, it is clear to me that Kim Kardashian OWNS YOU. Her very image has the ability to alter your mood. She occupies so much space in your head that you have gone so far as to conclude that Kanye West is sending you a direct message just by dating her.
But what would Steven Covey tell you to do based on the first habit: Be Proactive.
First, he would tell you to examine the Kim Kardashian/ Kanye West “problem” in terms of your Circle of Concern and Your Circle of Influence.
Proactive people focus on their Circle of Influence- those things that they can control.
Reactive people focus on the Circle of Concern- those things over which they have absolutely no control.
Your challenge is to identify those things you have control over and separate them from the things you have absolutely no control over and then adjust your expenditure of energy accordingly.
So let’s return to Kim Kardashian and your note.
Your main points were:
- "it hurts to see him and the media validate her in front of young black girls"
- "hes sayin anyone, even an uneducated, incestuous, porn star is better than every sista on the planet"
- "after he repeated tried to make himself the spokes person for black people"
- "and nobody seems to be offended by this stunt but they were so outraged over his other antics"
Let’s look at your Circle of Influence and Your Circle of Concern.
Circle of Concern- You can’t control who Kanye West dates or impregnates. You can’t control what bloggers and the media choose to cover. After all, the “media” that you complain of decided to shove television cameras in the faces of first graders in the immediate aftermath of a gunman mowing down their teachers and classmates- expecting responsible behavior out of this group is a stretch. You can’t control what meaning other people give to their relationship. You can’t control what Kanye West says- though I have yet to hear him make a statement that Kim Kardashian is better than every sista on the planet. You can’t control who appoints themselves as a representative of all of Black America- nor can you control whether someone is idiotic enough to conclude that Mr. West is a spokesperson for all of Black America. You can’t force people to be offended and outraged over something they cannot be offended and outraged about
Your Circle of Influence- You can control how “hurt” you are by Kanye West’s dating and mating activities. If you can’t figure out how to ease your “hurt” then I suggest seeking professional help with working through why this “hurts” you. I believe you when you say this hurts you and I don’t in anyway want to minimize your hurt. It’s real. HOWEVER- back to your Circle of Influence -
There are young Black girls who are in your immediate orbit that you likely have never had a conversation with about Kim Kardashian-I suspect you have not attempted to use your influence to counteract the alleged influences of Kim Kardashian on these young Black girls.
You have 100% control over who you think is “better” than you or any other Black woman. Black men can say and do whatever they want to do- they already are- they don’t have the ability to make me think ANY other woman is better than me. Sorry, ain’t gonna happen. Especially not some drug addled, mentally unstable, man-child with poor impulse control, horrible fashion sense and a proclivity for pouting and petulance. This is a man you have allowed to dictate who is better than you? No bueno! I won’t let Kanye West tell me how to cross the street let alone who is better than me?
If you in fact believe that Kim Kardashian is a great scourge who wants to devour the souls of little Black girls, then have you done everything within your immediate circle of influence to combat the alleged threat of Kim Kardashian and Kanye West- I’m gonna take a HUGE guess and say you haven’t even tried.
You’d rather focus on things you can’t control like “the media” and imaginary messages from Kanye West than say- “Hmm let me take a group of Black girls out to brunch and then let’s go see an afternoon performance of the local Black ballet company”. How many Black girls have you taken out on a cultural excursion of some sort so they can see diverse images of Black women? How many dollars have you donated to organizations who are presenting a different vision of what it means to be a woman in society?
But let’s say that all of this is a bit much for you. You didn’t intend for me to come up with a to do list. You want a simple answer.
Are you tripping? YEP.
Little baby Kimye is headed your way and there’s nothing you can do about it, so I suggest you be proactive by instituting an Ignorecott. Unlike a boycott where you direct all of your attention on letting the world know that you are unhappy with Kim Kardashian, you ignore her. She doesn’t exist. Neither does baby Kimye. Every year millions of babies are born and you have no idea. Why is this baby any different.
But but Blogmother- the news is everywhere! No it’s not. if you avoid gossip and entertainment blogs, you miss about 95% of Kimye coverage.
But what about the CHILDREN? WHAT ABOUT THE CHILDREN! What about the Black girls being influenced? My answer is that until you exhaust all of the options that are within your direct control to reach Black girls in your immediate circle of influence, worrying about mythical, undefinable masses of unidentified random Black girls is being REACTIVE!
So if you want to combat the Kim Kardashain effect, the 7 Habits say you ignore her and focus on things you can control. You don’t like the images of Kim Kardashian, then offer Black girls another image. And according to the 7 Habits- an amazing thing will happen as you focus your energy on things in your circle of influence- your circle of influence will grow.
What Kim and Kanye do isn't nearly as important as what YOU BELIEVE and what you value.
Kim Kardashian doesn’t bother me. She doesn’t entertain me. What entertains me is the way Black bloggers have manipulated Black women in to Pavlovian heart palpitations by baiting you over and over again with her various relationship exploits.
I don’t envy her fame-I’m an introvert and love being incognito. Don’t envy her relationships- all of her boyfriends and ex husbands are grade A jerks- the first one allegedly beat her- Ray J pimped her out- Chris Humphries won’t let her out of her il fated marriage, and Kanye West is an emotionally unstable, narcissist, with horrifically bad impulse control - these are NOT the characteristics of a desirable mate. To the extent that Kim Kardashian has removed Kanye West from Black women’s dating pool, we owe her an award- not contempt.
There is nothing that Kim Kardashain has that I think I’m entitled to. Not even her ability to enter the mainstream after shopping her sex tape. That’s not an achievement I envy.
I know. I know. Everyday the world wages war on the images of Black women and girls. If it wasn't Kim Kardashian, it would be something else. She's just your trigger. We all have other triggers. She's not the problem, she's the pain generator. Getting rid of her doesn't heal the underlying "hurt." In a sense, she is doing you a valuable service by identifying an area you need to work on.
I suspect that the reason you are focussed on nameless faceless Black girls being influenced by Kim Kardashian is likely because seeing her brings up deep wounds that other people, likely Black folks, inflicted upon you. The 7 Habits say you are responsible - response-ABLE for your own happiness now. I don't know who hurt you. And it sucks that they did, but the life you have now will very much be determined by YOUR CHOICES and not those of Kim Kardashian, Kanye West, and "the media." Ignorecott!
If you would like to submit your commentary for our series on the 7 Habits of Highly Effective Black Women, send me a message via the Facebook Fan Page or use our contact form. The next habit is probably one of my favorites: Begin With the End in Mind.